Press Council Act to be amended | Sunday Observer

Press Council Act to be amended

25 July, 2021

Minister of Mass Media Keheliya Rambukwella said he hopes to formalise the licensing process for TV channels and the registration process for all news websites in operation.

He told the Ministerial Consultative Committee on Mass Media that his Ministry is focusing on amending the Press Council Act to make the Media Board Act applicable to all media, adding that his Ministry was fulfilling its responsibilities on behalf of 22 million people. Minister Rambukwella said that after the resumption of tax on foreign teledramas and films telecast via local TV from February which was earlier suspended due to the Covid-19 pandemic, a revenue of Rs. 251 million has been collected so far. He said that attention will be paid to increase the tax levied so as to preserve local culture and local teledramas and to encourage local artistes to engage in it. He said though the Government spends Rs. 22 million a month on telecasting the 16-hour educational programs for children during the Covid-19 pandemic, the turnover is only Rs. 4 million. The State television channel was fulfilling its responsibility for the advancement of children. Minister Rambukwella said that the national television channel has now become a loss-making institution and that he hopes to develop it while preserving the national identity and introducing modern programs. He said that he hopes to bring revenue to a level where it can be settled by the end of the year.

The Minister said that his Ministry is faced with the serious challenge to improve State media institutions which had been severely affected by the pandemic.