Govt to set up Rs 951m electronic media city
ISLAMABAD, February 21 2006: The government is to establish a media city corporation of Pakistan at the cost of initial capital Rs951 million that will serve wide range of electronic media clients’ nationally and internationally.
“The USIS building and its adjacent plot in Islamabad for the proposed media tower is under active consideration,” sources told The News. The government intends to promote electronic media as an industry to realize its growth potential within Pakistan.
According to the draft of the proposal of establishing the media city, which has been endorsed by all the stakeholders and available with The News, the Media city will be a “client driven” facility that will reduce upfront cost of channel hosting.
It will extend the facilities of satellite uplinks, production studios, live TV & Radio studios, graphic workstations, server-based play out systems, OB vans, DSNG system and terrestrial connectivity & links. To materialise this project, the government is also working on media city policy under which national security, the ideology and national interests would be protected.
The media city, the document said, will advocate “responsible freedom” safeguarding respect, human dignity, public order and cultural values. Under the plan, the government will provide an un-matching package of incentives to the companies, which will operate in the city tower that include 100 percent ownership, 100 percent repatriation of capital & profits. Under the proposed incentive package, the companies will have no minimum and maximum limit for investment.
They (companies) will be allowed duty free imports of machinery, equipment & martial for studios and software and there will be no sales tax on import of goods which are to be used in electric media industry.
The companies will also be given the freedom from national import restrictions and relief from double taxation on location or relocation of media hubs in Pakistan The 50 years tax holiday for the companies is also proposed as per the documents available with The News.
About the legal scope of the media city, documents said, there would be a corporation-statuary body to be created under an act of Parliament or ordinance. The city would be a profit-oriented corporation and its shares will be offloaded on the stock exchange through the Security Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) regime in the 6th year after the commissioning of the project.
The media city will have the teleport facility at MCC and there will be three fixed satellites earth stations: 1) Pak Sat, 2) Thai Com, and 3) Asia Sat. There would also be an earth station for occasional use to uplink to any satellite in C/Ku Band.
The media city will also provide access to world satellite systems and international earth stations besides providing analogue & digital transmission facilities. The city, according to the document, will also provide encryption facilities on request, media storages and professional video conversion and editing.
Source: The News