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Singapore

MDA gave S$470m in support of Public Service Broadcasting over past 5 years

Information, Communications and the Arts Minister Dr Yaacob Ibrahim said the Media Development Authority (MDA) has provided about S$470 million of support to the Public Service Broadcast (PSB) funding over the past five years.

MDA gave S$470m in support of Public Service Broadcasting over past 5 years

Yaacob Ibrahim

SINGAPORE: Information, Communications and the Arts Minister Dr Yaacob Ibrahim said the Media Development Authority (MDA) has provided about S$470 million of support to the Public Service Broadcast (PSB) funding over the past five years.

This caters for about 2,000 hours of local PSB production each year.

Responding to a question from Nominated MP Janice Koh in Parliament on Monday, Dr Yaacob said 9 in 10 TV viewers or about 4.3 million watched a PSB funded programme last year.

In addition, PSB content on MediaCorp's xinmsn online portal garnered a total of 4.4 million views in the past year.

Dr Yaacob also revealed that In 2011, 40 per cent of local PSB productions were outsourced to independent production companies, an increase of about 10 per cent since 2005. The remaining 60 per cent were produced in-house by MediaCorp.

"I would like to emphasise that the requirement for MediaCorp to outsource productions to independent companies is an important part of the PSB framework as it helps to ensure a larger pool of creative ideas for quality PSB programmes and contributes to the development of the local production sector," he said.

Dr Yaacob also added that the MDA has put in place a performance management framework to measure the effectiveness of PSB in delivering high quality programmes.

Feedback is also gathered from the public and government's stakeholders to ensure that issues that are important to local viewers are used to guide the development of PSB programmes, he said. Surveys are also conducted to measure public satisfaction with its quality and engagement value.

Dr Yaacob added that MICA and MDA also regularly engage MediaCorp to identify areas of improvement based on stakeholder feedback and performance measurement results.

He also addressed concerns that viewership figures for MediaCorp's Channel 5 were falling.

Dr Yaacob said as of June, Channel 5's average daily prime time reach has reached 650,000 viewers, up slightly from the past three years' average of 610,000 viewers.

He stressed that MediaCorp would not rest on its laurels, saying that more would be done to improve the quality and reach of programmes.

To ensure that public viewing interests are met, Channel 5 has planned to increase its local primetime content hours by 20 per cent. This includes a mix of information, drama, local sports and variety programmes.

Channel 5 has also been reaching out to younger viewers, in particular, through online and social media platforms.

"Our local TV channels are facing intense competition for viewership due to media convergence. In particular, Channel 5 has to contend with the wide availability and volume of English programmes on other markets such as the US and UK which internet-savvy Singaporeans can easily access," Dr Yaacob said.

Source: CNA/wm/ir

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