Not even the British insurance industry would think of charging the kind of premium Channel 4 is now being forced to pay for the minimal benefits it would receive from ITV if it ever did encounter financial problems. Channel 4's board clearly does not consider it needs any such insurance policy. It was forced upon it by the 1990 Broadcasting Act despite the protests at the time of many, including myself, that such an insurance policy was neither right nor necessary.
It is time the Independent stopped being the voice of ITV and showed some concern about the public interest. The present situation in which Channel 4 may be compelled to pay pounds 500m to ITV over the next 10 years is indefensible and should be brought to an end.
The writer was chairman of Channel 4 from 1980 till 1987.Reuse content