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Digital Broadcasting: Radio

Volume 504: debated on Thursday 21 January 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of the likely effects of digital switchover under the provisions of the Digital Economy Bill on the ability of local commercial radio stations without a digital path to continue to broadcast on the analogue spectrum. (312081)

No specific assessment has been made of the impact of the radio provisions set out in the draft Digital Economy Bill on local commercial stations remaining on FM after the digital radio switchover. However, these provisions, and the proposals in the Digital Britain White Paper, were made following 18 months of consultation with the radio industry, which included representatives of small local commercial stations.

I am continuing this dialogue with the industry with the specific purpose of ensuring that local radio can continue to thrive on FM after the digital radio switchover.