Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed

Federal Government has approved 60 per cent debt forgiveness for debtor broadcast stations in the country to cushion effects of COVID-19 on the industry.

Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed who announced this in Abuja at a media briefing, pointed out Government’s efforts to institute financial sustainability among broadcast stations in the country.

Lai Mohammed noted that the broadcast industry had been particularly hard-hit due to falling revenues occasioned by the dwindling adverts and sponsored programmes in the wake of the pandemic.

He disclosed that many Radio and Television stations remained indebted to Government to the tune of N7. 8 billion.

The Minister further regretted that many of them were faced with the reality that their licenses would not be renewed in view of their indebtedness.

He  however, said criterion for enjoying debt forgiveness was for debtor stations to pay 40 per cent of their existing loans within the next three months

The minister said  Government also approved  30 percent discount for  existing license fee for all Open Terrestrial Radio and Television services effective July 10.

He said the debt forgiveness would apply to functional licensed Terrestrial Radio and Television stations only.

He gave an assurance that the measures taken by the government would  give lifeline and revamp the industry as well as help reposition it for challenges of business in the post-COVID-19 era.