17 November 2005
78% foreign programmes on public service television
The fact that only one in five programmes on TV2 are Kiwi-made is a terrible indictment on TVNZ's Charter, Green Party
Broadcasting Spokesperson Sue Kedgley says.
Three years after the Charter's implementation, TV2 is screening just 22.7 percent local content between 6am and
midnight, with TVNZ's two channels together only averaging 39 percent NZ-made programming in the same time period,
according to TVNZ's 2005 report released yesterday.
"What is the point of having a public service, publicly owned channel that screens 78 percent foreign-made programmes?
"The truth is that the Charter goals are simply not being met. Clearly its lack of teeth is allowing TVNZ to continue to
put commercial goals ahead of its public service responsibilities. This is especially of concern given the TVNZ Board
Chairman's suggestion today that TVNZ will need to reduce local programming next year because it is 'substantially more
expensive than foreign purchased programming'."
Ms Kedgley says the primary goal of the state broadcaster is supposed to be 'to reflect New Zealand to New Zealanders'.
"Instead of doing this, TV2 is reflecting foreign cultures and values to New Zealanders. This is especially concerning
considering that TV2 is a channel aimed at children and young people. Children growing up in New Zealand who watch TV2
will learn more about Los Angeles, and the values of the USA, than they will about their own communities.
"The failure of TVNZ to increase the amount of local content, despite the substantial funding given by government for
this purpose, suggests it may be time to impose local content quotas on free-to-air television."
New Zealand is lagging far behind other countries when it comes to local programming. Australia has local content quotas
of 55 percent for all its commercial television channels, and the United Kingdom has, on average, 91 percent local
programming. Other countries like Canada, Italy and Germany all have more than 75 percent of local programming on their
channels, Ms Kedgley says.