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Centre approves amendments in FM Radio Phase-III Policy guidelines

Three crucial amendments to certain provisions were approved by the government.

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Mumbai: The central government has approved the amendments to certain provisions contained in the policy guidelines on the expansion of FM radio broadcasting services through private agencies (phase-III), referred to as the private FM phase-III policy guidelines.

The decision was taken in a cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The three-year window for restructuring FM radio permissions within the same management group throughout the licensing duration of 15 years has been eliminated by the government in order to move in this direction.

The government has also agreed to remove the 15 per cent national cap on channel holdings, which has been a long-standing demand of the radio industry.

Furthermore, as part of the FM radio policy's simplification of financial eligibility norms, an applicant company can now participate in bidding for 'C' and 'D' category cities with a net worth of just Rs 1 crore, as opposed to Rs 1.5 crore previously.

These three amendments will help the private FM radio industry fully leverage economies of scale and pave the way for further FM radio and entertainment expansion in tier-III cities across the country.

This will not only create new job opportunities but will also ensure that music and entertainment are accessible to the general public in even the most remote parts of the country through FTA (free-to-air) radio media.

To improve the ease of doing business in the country, the government has focused on simplifying and rationalising existing rules in order to make governance more efficient and effective, so that the benefits reach the common man.

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