Government allows 13 firms to set up uplink hubs

The government has permitted 13 companies to set up 14 uplinking hubs and teleports in the country. It has liberalised the uplinking policy to permit private companies incorporated in India with permissible foreign/NRI/OCB equity to set up uplinking hubs for leasing or hiring out their facilities to the broadcasters, the United News of India has reported.

All television channels, irrespective of their ownership, including equity structure or management control, have been permitted to uplink from India provided they undertake to comply with the broadcasting (programme and advertising) codes laid down by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry.

The thirteen companies permitted to set up uplinking hubs in the country are Essel Shyam, Sun TV, Television Eighteen, TV Today Network, Jain Studio, Raj TV Network, Entertainment TV Network, Hyderabad based Ushodaya Enterprises, Bangalore based Technology Media Group, Intelvision, Asianet Communications, Digital Broadcast India and Sahara Sanchar.

The move follows finance minister Yashwant Sinha's budget announcement that customs duties on earth stations has been reduced from 35 per cent to 25 per cent. Specifically referring to the duty reduction on earth stations, Sinha in his budget speech had said this was keeping in mind India's potential to become the uplinking hub for South Asian countries.

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