Thai PBS makes court filing in wake of Channel 3's lawsuit against NBTC

Economy July 08, 2014 00:00

By Usanee Mongkolporn
The Nation

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Public TV operator Thai PBS has made a filing at the Central Administration Court stating that it might be affected by Channel 3's lawsuit against the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission's definition of what is a free-to-air TV channel

Natee Sukonrat, chairman of the NBTC broadcasting committee, said Thai PBS viewed the lawsuit as making it seem a if it opposed the regulator’s attempt 
to transition Thailand from the analog TV system to digital – and this could affect Thai PBS’s operation.
Thai PBS, which simulcasts programmes on both analog and digital TV, plans to switch off its analog system within next three years. If it cannot embrace digital, it will have to go on bearing simulcast costs.
In May, Channel 3 made a filing at the Central Administrative Court against the NBTC’s decision to define only digital TV channels as free-to-air channels, with cable and satellite TV platforms required to carry them – but not carry analog channels.
Under this definition, the broadcaster’s existing analog channel will in September no longer be a free-to-air channel and cannot be carried on cable and satellite TV platforms.