Cable TV Broadcasting Union against the regulation on broadcasting election campaign ads
On May 23, the directors of television channels, such as "Shonkhor", "NBS", "Parliament Channel" and "Shuud" who are representing 14 cable televisions, have expressed their opposition against the regulation released by the Communications Regulatory Commission of Mongolia.
This regulation forbids election campaign ads to be broadcasted through cable television channels, but permits for the rest of broadcasters to do so. The owners of the above cable channels explained that this regulation violates a number of legislations such as Law on press freedom and the Law on monopoly.
This regulation was originally intended for double airing broadcasters such as MN25 (2), TV9 (2), UBS (2) and TV5 (2). Because, election campaign ads are permitted a maximum of two hours per day to broadcast through each channel during the election campaign
days, which means airing period was to double to 4 hours for broadcasters with its secondary channels. Thus, the regulation cited to broadcast election campaign ads through TV channels that only use air wave. However, with the release of additional regulations, election campaign ads were forbidden to be broadcasted through the above mentioned cable channels.
“The Communications Regulatory Commission runs under the authority of the Prime Minister and is a regulatory agency of the Government of Mongolia. Therefore, we will submit our requirement to discard this regulation to Prime Minister S.Batbold. There are no regulations that can be above the law. Speaking straightforward, we deem that the Mongolian People’s Party is administering this action that is directly violating press freedom”, said the Executive Director of “Shonkhor” TV, G.Munkhbayasgalan.
The Cable TV Broadcasting Union is to address the Prime Minister, the President and the Administrative Court of the Capital of Mongolia regarding this issue.
Also, several minor political parties
have expressed their support of these broadcasters. They said, at air wave broadcasting televisions, the cost of election campaign ads for one minute is at 800 thousand to 1 million MNT, which is an unaffordable price for independent candidates and minor parties.
They also said that this regulation, which indirectly halts advertisement time slots of cable televisions, is also violating rights of viewers.
Currently, out of 149 television channels that are operating in the country, a total of 16 TV channels broadcast nationwide, whereas there are a total of 39 television channels
in Ulaanbaatar city.