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Belarus adjusts to changes on foreign channel licensing rules

Belarusian service providers are scrambling to readjust their programming line-ups following the introduction of new government regulations that annulled existing licences granted to foreign channel providers.

According to a presidential decree signed on October 7, confirmed by the country’s Council of Ministers in December, all licences granted to international channel providers before January 1 2014 will be invalid from March 1 this year.

The government has introduced a number of changes in the procedures that foreign broadcasters must adhere to in order to obtain permits to broadcast in the country.

Service providers including Cosmos TV Belarus and MTIS have warned their subscribers that changes to their programming line-up are likely as they adjust to ensure they conform to the licensing rules.