The organisation says hundreds of UK-based channels that are received in EU countries will be forced to find alternative arrangements, including securing broadcast licences from regulators in the remaining EU Member States before the end of March, to ensure they have legally valid EU broadcast licences once the UK is no longer part of the single market.
Already, Broadband TV News is aware of licence applications that have been made to Irish and German administrations.
“International broadcasters have faced huge uncertainty ever since the Referendum in 2016. The UK is Europe’s leading international broadcasting hub for good reason, and no broadcaster wants to restructure their operations,” said Adam Minns, COBA’s Executive Director. “Some broadcasters have been forced to so do already, but many have waited until now before taking this immensely complex and difficult decision. The costs and uncertainty of a hurried relocation will be felt by businesses, their employees and the supply chain. COBA urges MPs to consider the importance of avoiding a cliff edge, whatever ultimate scenario they favour.”
On Tuesday, prime minister Theresa May suffer three major defeats to her EU withdrawal deal.