CBC/Radio-Canada proposes solution to affordability of cable and satellite
television services

OTTAWA, Nov. 3 /CNW Telbec/ - In a submission filed with the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) yesterday, CBC/Radio-Canada offers a solution to the issue of the affordability should a compensation regime for the value of local television signals be implemented.

The Corporation recommends the introduction of a pared-down basic cable package, the content and maximum price of which would be limited by the CRTC. The all-Canadian package would include only the "essentials": local television stations and a very limited number of other licensed programming services.

"We think it's critical that all Canadians - regardless of demographic or location - have access to an inexpensive package of essential Canadian television services," said Hubert T. Lacroix, President and CEO of CBC/Radio-Canada. "That's what our solution offers."

"The hope was that competition would protect consumers. That hope was misplaced," said Steven Guiton, Chief Regulatory Officer for CBC/Radio-Canada. "There appears to be very little keeping Canadian cable rates in check except the fear of a consumer revolt if the abuse becomes too blatantly obvious. And even then, the cable and satellite companies have devised an effective shield - blame it on the CRTC. It's time things change."

In its submission, CBC/Radio-Canada details a straightforward approach to establishing a new framework that could easily be implemented in time for the digital transition scheduled for August 2011.

About CBC/Radio-Canada

CBC/Radio-Canada is Canada's national public broadcaster and one of its largest cultural institutions. The Corporation is a leader in reaching Canadians on new platforms and delivers a comprehensive range of radio, television, Internet, and satellite-based services. Deeply rooted in the regions, CBC/Radio-Canada is the only domestic broadcaster to offer diverse regional and cultural perspectives in English, French and eight Aboriginal languages.

SOURCE Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

For further information: For further information: Angus McKinnon, Senior Advisor, Media Relations and Issues Management, CBC/Radio-Canada, (613) 288-6235, angus.mckinnon@cbc.ca

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