ABC and SBS will get $4.2 billion over three years
Australia’s public broadcasters will receive $4.2 billion over three years as the Morrison government ends an $84 million funding freeze.
He also imposed on the ABC and SBS a statement of expectations requiring broadcasters to provide more information on factors such as regional staffing levels and programming.
Communications Minister Paul Fletcher warned the ABC to “avoid the reality or perception of political bias” in announcing the extra funding.
“Having high expectations of how the ABC serves all Australians – those in the inner city, those in the outer suburbs, those in regional and remote Australia – that does not attack the ABC,” a- he told ABC radio on Monday.
“It is very important that the ABC itself be scrupulously objective and impartial.”
The funding marks the end of the coalition’s previous escalation freeze that cost the CBA $84 million over three years.
“What we are doing is doing a funding needs assessment of ABC and SBS, just like we are doing a funding needs assessment of all other organizations and programs that have a claim or are looking to appeal. to the budget,” Fletcher said.
He refused to guarantee that a re-elected coalition government would not cut funding for the ABC in the future.
“What I can commit to is the funding that we announced today over a three-year period,” he said.
The ABC will receive $3,284.9 million over the next three years and the SBS $953.7 million.
The government also unveiled a $7.3 million program to look at the future of free-to-air TV and proposed requirements for streaming services to invest in Australian content.
Submissions on the latter are due before April 24.
A working group will also be set up to look at how broadcasting will be regulated in the future as well as the prominence or availability of Australian content on TV platforms.