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EU FUNDING OF THE BBC

EDM (Early Day Motion) 791: tabled on 28 January 2008

Tabled in the 2007-08 session.

This motion has been signed by 11 Members. It has not yet had any amendments submitted.

As this motion is using historical data, we may not have the record of the original ordering, in which case signatories are listed alphabetically.

Motion text

That this House notes that soft loans and payments amounting to 258 million euros over the last five years were paid by the EU to the BBC; believes that such payments compromise the independence and objectivity of the BBC on EU issues; further notes that the BBC benefited by a cash-equivalent of approximately 39 million euros which is made up of 20.4 million actual saved interest on loan facilities of 240 million, 2.5 million in grants, 14.6 million to BBC World and 1.7 million euros in indirect payments; further notes that there are, in addition, undisclosed sums in respect of joint projects; further believes that these substantial benefits may offend against the BBC's Royal Charter, which demands independence, and also its editorial guidelines which state that the BBC should not `accept funds from any organisation whose interests or actions could raise doubts about the objectivity of programming'; and cites, as continuing evidence of BBC bias in its coverage of EU affairs, the BBC's refusal to broadcast coverage of the National Pro-Referendum Rally at Westminster on 27th October 2007; therefore calls on the Government to establish an independent inquiry into EU funding of the BBC and its impact on the BBC's objectivity on European matters and current debate over a referendum on the EU Constitution; and congratulates the Campaign for an Independent Britain for its initiative in uncovering this information.