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NMA Responds To Publication Of The BBC Mid-Term Review

22 January 2024

Responding to the publication of the BBC Mid-Term Review, News Media Association chief executive Owen Meredith said: “The government’s recommendation that the BBC strengthen its transparency and engagement with commercial media providers is welcome and makes clear the BBC needs to change its current approach, particularly in the local news marketplace, to support rather than compete with commercial providers.

“We recognise the limitations and scope of the Mid-Term Review and, while this doesn’t deliver the fundamental change required from the BBC, it provides an important and timely signal.

“We look forward to working with the Government and Parliament as we approach the 2027 Charter Review to ensure the BBC delivers its mission in a way that does not continue to undermine and harm commercial news publishers, with whom it now directly competes on the digital newsstand in an unprecedented way.

“By needlessly boosting its digital local news offering, at the expense of much-loved local radio services, the BBC threatens to crush commercial local news publishers who cannot be expected compete with the might of the licence fee. Ultimately, this could result in the BBC becoming the only source of local news in many communities.

“MPs and Ofcom need to wake up to this threat and press the BBC to change course on these misguided plans.”

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