Culture secretary raises morale of TV stakeholders

Culture secretary Jeremy Hunt stressed that the media and creative industries were the “jewel in Britain’s economic crown” in his first speech to media luminaries since the formation of the coalition government.

Jeremy Hunt
Jeremy Hunt

However, Hunt told guests at the annual reception of the All-Party Parliamentary Media Group that without the acceleration of a “super broadband” programme in the next few years, the UK would not be able to maintain its place in the development of an innovative and entrepreneurial culture.

“We have got to sort these things out if we aim to be the hub for digital and creative industries. In the next five years we want the best and fastest broadband network in Europe.We think we can do that without the support of the taxpayer.”

Hunt added that a regulatory framework “in tune with the digital age” was vital to the growth of the creative industries and this would include overhaul of the local media sector to remove cross-media ownership rules.

“We are looking at what we can do to allow the emergence of cross-platform, multimedia local media companies.”

He add that the coalition supported a strong BBC “but we want strong competition”.

Speak to Marketing Week after his speech, Hunt reaffirmed the pre-election pledge by the Tory party to look at the role of TV regulator Ofcom and to reduce its involvement in matters of media policy.

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