The threat of a Europe-wide ban on TV advertising to children has
receded after the Swedish government climbed down from its pledge to use
its upcoming EU presidency to force the ban through.
Faced with the impossible task of winning approval for a ban during
their six-month presidency, the Swedes will switch their efforts into
having it incorporated in the European Union Broadcasting Directive when
it is revised in 2003.
But Lionel Stanbrook, deputy director-general of the Advertising
Association, which has been marshalling opposition to the ban, warned
that the fight was not over. He said: ’The threat hasn’t gone away and
may return in a more virulent form in 2003.’
The Swedes’ rethink of their plan to extend their nine-year-old national
ban across the EU was disclosed by Lars Maren, the deputy director of
the Swedish Culture Ministry’s media division.
Advertising lobbyists believe the Swedes have accepted that to get the
necessary regulations drafted and approved by the EU institutions would
be unrealistic during their presidency period.
’It isn’t feasible to get a ban implemented in under three years,’