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Award of certain licences subject to conditions

'.--(1) After section 17 of the 1990 Act there is inserted--
"Award of Channel 3 licence subject to conditions.

17A.--(1) The Commission may, when awarding a Channel 3 licence to any person, make the grant of the licence to him conditional on his compliance before the grant with such specified requirements relating to the financing of the service as appear to them to be appropriate, having regard to--
(a) any duties which are or may be imposed on them, or on the licence holder, by or under this Act, and
(b) any information provided to them under section 15(3)(g) by the person to whom the licence is awarded as to his projected financial position during the period for which the licence would be in force.

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(2) Where the Commission determine that any condition imposed by them in relation to a Channel 3 licence in pursuance of subsection (1) has not been satisfied, section 17 shall (subject to subsection (3)) have effect as if the person to whom the licence was awarded had not made an application for it.
(3) Section 17 shall not so have effect if the Commission decide that it would be desirable to publish a fresh notice under section 15(1) in respect of the grant of the licence."
(2) In section 51 of the 1990 Act (procedure to be followed by Commission in connection with consideration of applications for, and awarding of, licences to provide additional services), in subsection (3)--
(a) for "section 17" there is substituted "sections 17 and 17A", and
(b) for "it applies" there is substituted "they apply".
(3) After section 76 of the 1990 Act there is inserted--
"Award of local delivery licence subject to conditions.

76A.--(1) The Commission may, when awarding a local delivery licence to any person, make the grant of the licence to him conditional on his compliance before the grant with such specified requirements relating to the financing of the service as appear to them to be appropriate, having regard to--
(a) any duties which are or may be imposed on them, or on the licence holder, by or under this Act, and
(b) any information provided to them under section 74(3)(d) by the person to whom the licence is awarded as to his projected financial position during the period for which the licence would be in force.
(2) Where the Commission determine that any condition imposed by them in relation to a local delivery licence in pursuance of subsection (1) has not been satisfied, section 76 shall (subject to subsection (3)) have effect as if the person to whom the licence was awarded had not made an application for it.
(3) Section 76 shall not so have effect if the Commission decide that it would be desirable to publish a fresh notice under section 74(1) in respect of the grant of the licence."'.

Lord Inglewood: My Lords, I beg to move that the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendments Nos. 104 to 131. I have already spoken to these amendments.

Moved, That the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendments Nos. 104 to 131.--(Lord Inglewood.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.

COMMONS AMENDMENT

132

After Clause 72, insert the following new clause--

Ancillary services

'. Section 48 of the 1990 Act (Additional services) is amended in paragraph (c) of subsection (3) by the addition after the words "their contents" of the words "or relate to the promotion or listing of such programmes"'.

Lord Inglewood: My Lords, I beg to move that the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 132. This amendment was tabled by the Opposition in another place and the Government were happy to accept the amendment as drafted, which expands the definition of ancillary services in Section 48(3) of the 1990 Act. This amendment will enable fuller listings by Channels 3, 4 and 5 of their forthcoming programmes on their Teletext pages currently broadcast as ancillary

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services. Amendment No. 132 will also enable the principal terrestrial broadcasters to develop further systems of programme delivery control and give more information to the viewer about their services.

Moved, That the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 132.--(Lord Inglewood.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.

COMMONS AMENDMENT

133

After Clause 73, insert the following new clause--

Power of Independent Television Commission to suspend licence to provide non-domestic satellite service

'. After section 45 of the 1990 Act there is inserted--
"Special power of revocation and suspension on certain grounds in case of licence to provide non-domestic satellite service.

45A.--(1) If the Commission are satisfied--
(a) that the holder of a licence to provide a non-domestic satellite service has included in the service one or more programmes containing material likely to encourage or incite to crime or to lead to disorder,
(b) that he has thereby failed to comply with a condition included in the licence in pursuance of section 6(1)(a), and
(c) that the failure is such as to justify the revocation of the licence,
they shall serve on the holder of the licence a notice under subsection (2).
(2) A notice under this subsection is a notice--
(a) stating that the Commission are satisfied as mentioned in subsection (1),
(b) specifying the respects in which, in their opinion, the licence holder has failed to comply with the condition mentioned in paragraph (b) of that subsection,
(c) stating that the Commission may revoke his licence after the end of the period of twenty-one days beginning with the date on which the notice is served on the licence holder,
(d) informing the licence holder of his right to make representations to the Commission within that period about the matters complained of, and
(e) suspending the licence as from the time when the notice is served on the licence holder until the revocation takes effect or the Commission decide not to revoke the licence.
(3) If the Commission, having considered any representations about the matters complained of made to them within the period referred to in subsection (2)(c) by the licence holder, are satisfied that it is necessary in the public interest to revoke the licence in question, they shall serve on the licence holder a notice revoking the licence.
(4) A notice under subsection (3) shall not take effect until the end of the period of twenty-eight days beginning with the day on which that notice was served on the licence holder.
(5) Section 42 (as applied by section 45(5)) shall not have effect in relation to the revocation of a licence in pursuance of a notice under subsection (1)."'.

Lord Inglewood: My Lords, I beg to move that the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 133. In speaking to this amendment, I should like to speak also to Amendments Nos. 138, 152 and 156. Your Lordships will know that in this country we have

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a liberal and deregulated broadcasting regime. We must, however, be vigilant against the exploitation of that framework particularly by those who see the opportunity to take advantage of our liberal regime in the way in which they direct broadcasts to other countries where they profoundly disagree with the government of the receiving country. While the Government are always conscious of the right of free speech in this country and of our obligations in that regard under international conventions, equally strongly they believe that the maintenance of good and proper relations between the UK and other countries requires that this matter be dealt with in legislation. Each of these amendments is directed in different ways to that consideration.

Amendment No. 133 gives a special power to the Independent Television Commission, if it thinks fit, to suspend and revoke a non-domestic television broadcasting satellite licence where there has been a serious breach of that licence by the inclusion of material likely to encourage or incite to crime or to lead to disorder. Amendment No. 138 provides parallel powers to the Radio Authority in respect of satellite radio licences.

The Government do not consider it necessary to extend the scope of the existing rules in respect of political disqualification contained in the 1990 Act because they are already comprehensive. However, the Government wish to place beyond any shadow of a doubt the obligations of the commission and authority in respect of investigation and judgment with regard to disqualification on political grounds when they are considering an application for a licence or taking a view on a current licence. Amendment No. 152 has this effect. What concerns the Government is that those who are disqualified under the existing legislation by virtue of their political objectives, might, if they are sufficiently motivated or reckless, provide false information or withhold information. The Government therefore believe that it is necessary to create a new offence. This is the effect of Amendment No. 153. Amendment No. 154 gives the court a discretion to order an offender convicted under the provisions of Amendment No. 153 to be disqualified from holding a broadcasting licence for a period of up to five years as the court thinks fit. Amendment No. 155 provides for an appeal. Amendment No. 156 is consequential to these amendments.

Moved, That the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 133.--(Lord Inglewood.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.


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