Spanish FTA broadcasters call for OTT players to face same obligations

Spanish free-to-air TV broadcasters group the Unión de Televisiones Comerciales en Abierto (UTECA) has demanded that the country’s government take steps to ensure that global digital players such as Netflix, HBO and Amazon face the same obligations as they do to support Spanish content creation.

Alejandro Echevarría

Alejandro Echevarría

UTECA president Alejandro Echevarría accused the digital players of inhabiting a “legal jungle” and demanded that online video providers contribute to the financing both of public broadcaster RTVE and European cinema, as commercial broadcasters are obliged to.

Spanish commercial broadcasters are obliged to contribute 3% of their revenues to support RTVE and 5% to the financial of European content, rising to 6% in the case of publicly quoted companies.

Echevarría said that the current regulations, dating from 2010, are obsolete and urged legislators to make use of the implementation of the new European audiovisual communication directive to make changes.

Echevarría also called on the clearing of the 700MHz spectrum in Spain to be implemented with the least impact and cost possible. The Spanish government is this month opening a consultation on how to implement the transition and secure the second digital dividend.