Jabbar expects private channels by early 2001
KARACH I- The Advisor to Chief Executive on National Affairs and Information, Javed Jabbar, has said that with approval of the Cabinet in principle of the Policy Framework for private and independent Radio and Television channels in Pakistan, the country was at the threshold of a new era in Mass Communication. The Adviser recounted six different phases for this purpose.
The first phase, he said, will comprise the period between May and October 2000. During this period of about 6 months, several basic and preparatory steps would be taken.
Javed Jabbar explained that first the Ordinance to establish the Regulatory Authority for Media Broadcast Organization (RAMBO) is expected to he promulgated in May.
Secondly the Chairman and Members of the Authority will be appointed or expected to be appointed in June.
Thirdly the Authority will open up its offices, acquire its operational infrastructure and frame rules in the period between July and September.
Fourthly the Authority is likely to invite applications for the first set of licences by about September-October 2000.
Fifthly the process of scrutiny of applications for licences and the grant of initial licences is likely to be completed by November-December 2000.
Sixthly the first private stations are likely to commence broadcast during first quarter of year 2001 as the licences would need to import the equipment and establish their own infrastructure after issuance of licence to them.
When asked for comments on a report appearing in a section of the press in which he reportedly said that the private channel will start next month i.e May, 2000, Javed Jabbar contradicted the same and said it was mere assumption. He said this presumption was obviously based on an inadvertent misunderstanding.
Source: The Nation