The transition to digital broadcasting in Russia and Ukraine is driving the creation of new regulations to govern the sector.
However, in the leading article of a new report (Digital Television) published by the European Audiovisual Observatory, its authors Andrei Richter (Moscow Media Law and Policy Centre) and Taras Shevchenko (Kiev Media Law Institute) question the real potential for achieving “adequate legal regulation and the setting of transparent parameters for technical advancement” as a result of this process.
The report also talks of such challenges as the domination of state-run broadcasters in Russia and possible allocation of the first three multiplexes to incumbent players favoured by government policy, along with the possible collapse of hundreds of regional broadcasters due to high switchover costs.
The planned transition to digital broadcasting in Russia between 2009-2015 will cost €2.752 million, with the state paying €1.716 million and private investment the remainder.
That in Ukraine over the same period will cost a much more modest €365 million, with private investment (€364.24 million), rather than state, providing most of the funding.