BBC to cut costs by £20 million in BBC Finance

MUMBAI: UK pubcaster The BBC has announced a number of changes to BBC Finance as part of the corporation's drive to make significant cost reductions across its support divisions.

Starting in 2006/7, BBC Finance is proposing several changes.First on the agenda is creating a new specialist Finance Centre and introduce new, simpler business procedures and a reduction in internal trading.

To save costs, it is also looking to outsource around 40 posts to an external provider in 2007/8. The number of posts in BBC Finance will reduce from around 650 in 2005/6 to 310 posts in 2006/7, to 260 posts in 2007/8.

These measures will contribute to an anticipated saving within BBC Finance of £20 million by 2008.

The changes are part of BBC DG Mark Thompson's target for the corporation to find an annual £320m savings within three years, to be reinvested into programme making.

BBC director of finance Zarin Patel said, "These proposed changes will enable the BBC to simplify the business side of making programmes and to spend more money on meeting the needs of our audiences. The proposals will also enable us to maintain and develop consistent business procedures as well as drive continuous improvement. I believe that, difficult though this is, we are making the right decisions for the whole BBC and our licence fee payers."

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