NEWS: Labour Party takes Mirror Group’s side in TV monopoly row

The Labour Party is set to throw its weight behind the Mirror Group Newspapers campaign to become a major player in terrestrial TV.

The Labour Party is set to throw its weight behind the Mirror Group

Newspapers campaign to become a major player in terrestrial TV.



Under the proposed Broadcasting Bill, newspaper groups with more than a

20 per cent share of the national newspaper market would be barred from

owning more than 15 per cent of the total TV audience.



Mirror Group currently controls about 23 per cent of the newspaper

market, but it has been lobbying MPs furiously in a bid to raise the

threshold to 25 per cent, enabling it to pursue its terrestrial TV

interests.



The Mirror Group chief executive, David Montgomery, said last week that

he saw ‘synergies in TV and newspaper companies coming together’,

fuelling speculation about a possible tie-up with Carlton

Communications.



Labour seems to have been won over by Mirror Group’s arguments that, as

an anti-Government media owner, it is being discriminated against by the

Government. An official in the office of the Shadow Broadcasting

Spokesperson, Lewis Mooney, told Campaign: ‘Mirror Group has put a very

strong case to us. We do believe it has been discriminated against, as

it is the only newspaper group not allowed to expand into TV.’



He said that the Labour Lords had been considering tabling an amendment

to the Broadcasting Bill’s passage through the upper house.



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