BEAUTY CONTEST FOR TV FREQUENCIES: THE GOVERNMENT NEEDS TO RE-AFFIRM LEGAL CERTAINTY
BEAUTY CONTEST FOR TV FREQUENCIES:
THE GOVERNMENT NEEDS TO RE-AFFIRM LEGAL CERTAINTY
Following the news of the suspension of the procedure known as the "beauty contest" for digital TV frequencies, Mediaset believes that if fact this suspends a situation of dubious legality that should rather be clarified as soon as possible.
Apart from some widely diffused and deliberate obfuscation, the "beauty contest" is entirely legitimate. The procedure being followed has been verified step by step, and in minute detail, by AGCO, the ministry of economic development and the European Commission.. It is a procedure that is fair, transparent and non-discriminatory and able to conclude the pending suits regarding the issue brought against Italy by the EU.
While the allocation was not made by auction, but on the basis of economic parameters such as investments made and foreseen, the solidity of the industrial plan and demonstrable professional competence, was officially shared by with the European Commission and the Commission itself agreed that integrated operators had the right to participate in the allocation with cogent limits and obligations.
And this is the clearest demonstration that the "beauty contest" does not favour anyone, least of all integrated operators such as Mediaset which in the switch from analogue to digital have already been penalised with the loss of one multiplex each. Moreover, Mediaset has always acquired, with payment, frequencies on the market and every year contributes to the state a conspicuous broadcasting licence fee calculated on the basis of its revenues.
When the state officially launches a public allocation procedure for a given good, it makes a precise commitment to those who sign up and make substantial investments. And all of the operators recognised as suitable - public, private, national or local - have in turn made commitments and have the right to expect the state to maintain its promises.
Mediaset is therefore confident that the minister and the government will clarify the situation and, until the details of the measures proposed area made public, reserves the right to evaluate any action that may become necessary to protect its interest as a listed company.
Cologno Monzese, January 20, 2012
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