Should govt directly distribute ads to newspapers?
ISLAMABAD: The federal government has sent the draft of new policy for issuing advertisements to the print and electronic media to the stakeholders for their feedback and recommendations.
The APNS, CPNE, PBA, PFUJ, provincial governments and concerned institutions have been asked to furnish their suggestions after thoroughly studying the new policy draft. Secretary Information and Broadcasting Shafqat Jalil said while talking to this correspondent that the powers of giving ads should be given to the Press Information Department (PID). He said it has been suggested that the government ministries, divisions, autonomous bodies and corporations will give ads only through the PID. It has also been recommended to abolish the 25 percent of regional newspapers. If it happens, then ads for newspapers and TV channels will not be issued through advertising agencies and the PID will directly issue the ads.
The draft also seeks to introduce three new categories of newspapers. The draft says the ruling party in the country will not be entitled to use public funds for the party ads. The new rates of the TV ads will be issued within 30 days of the approval of the new policy by the federal cabinet. The agency to determine rating of channels will be determined after approval of Pemra.
The draft proposes that government tender notices will be published in two national English dailies and a regional newspaper or in all editions of a national newspaper. Tender notices costing up to Rs10 million will be published in six newspapers, including four national newspapers. Tenders of over Rs10 million will also be given to two national Urdu and English dailies each. If an ad is to be given in more than one languages, then they will be given to one English, two Urdu and local newspaper. Job ads will be given to three national dailies and one regional newspaper, while display ads will be published for specific subscribers. If an ad concerns to the federal level, then it will be given to six newspapers, including three Urdu or English and three local newspapers. Show cause notices of government and autonomous bodies will be given to two national newspapers and one local newspaper.
It has been proposed that all the promotional ads will only be released to newspapers, TV and radio channels through the PID and payments will be made through the PID or DGPR. The PID will give ads to only that publications which are on the central media list.
According to the draft, newspapers will be divided into three categories. Newspapers having daily circulation of 30,000 and at least 50 employees will be placed in Category-A, newspapers with 15,000 circulation and 20 employees will be placed in Category-B and the remaining newspapers, including online publications, will be included in Category-C.