How the rules on ownership will work

PRIMARY legislation next year will propose:

q Newspaper groups with less than 20% of national newspaper circulation to be allowed to control radio and television broadcasters with up to 15% market share.

q Newspaper groups not to own local TV or radio licences if they already have 30% of region's newspaper circulation.

q No limits on ownership of terrestrial TV, satellite and cable broadcasters, unless more than 20% of a broadcaster is owned by a newspaper with more than 20% of national circulation.

q Abolition of 50% limit on combined Channel 3 holdings in ITN.

q Abolition of limit on number of local radio licences which may be held, within existing points system.

q As now, no-one to own more than two stations on Channels 3 or 5.

q Regulator to have power to disallow control not in public interest.

Meanwhile, immediate legislation will:

q Increase limit on number of radio licences from 20 to 35.

q Remove limits on holdings of radio licences carrying audiences of 1m+.

q Raise from 15% to 25% the limit on share stakes producers and broadcasters can hold in one another.

q Liberalise definition of independent producer.

q Double from 25,000 to 50,000 the minimum circulation for newspaper mergers to be referred to the Monopolies & Mergers Commission.

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