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TV New Zealand explores all options to redress its financial situation

The state-owned television network in New Zealand, TVNZ is exploring all options to redress its financial situation. Broadcasting Minister Clare Curran is alarmed nothing is being done to address TVNZ’s declining revenue, despite being warned about it by officials earlier this year.

Treasury provided a report to ministers in February saying under current settings the broadcaster’s revenue and profitability was in a long-term decline and officials did not see that improving.

The statement is part of an Official Information Act response posted on the Treasury website: “Although TVNZ is looking for opportunities to further reduce its costs, the company has advised in its most recent quarterly report that some form of structural intervention will be required for long-term sustainability. This means that without structural change, ministers would eventually need to provide ongoing operating funding for TVNZ to continue broadcasting.”

It also suggested the highest value commercial option for the shareholders of TVNZ would be to sell the company. Former Finance Minister Steven Joyce, who was presented with the report when in government, said the main point Treasury made that all traditional media was in decline was a valid one. He said the National-led government did not believe selling off TVNZ was the answer.