NBTC excludes World Cup from ‘must have’ broadcast rule

The National Broadcasting And Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) board yesterday unanimously decided to exclude the World Cup football tournament from its “must Have” rule, effective immediately. This rule Has been In place since 2012, obliging companies That own the broadcast rights to seven major sporting events to allow free TV channels to air the content.

The seven events include the FIFA World Cup, Southeast Asian Games, ASEAN Para Games, Asian Games, Asian Para Games, Olympic Games And Paralympic Games.

Dr Sarana Boonbaichaiyapruck, the NBTC Chairman, pointed out That the World Cup Is a globally popular commercial event That occurs every four years. FIFA’s rules stipulate That companies holding the broadcast rights for the World Cup must air a minimum Of 200 hours Of football programmes on public TV In the country where the rights holder Is based.

The removal Of the World Cup from the “must Have” list facilitates potential future adjustments to the rule, according to Dr Sarana. A source from NBTC, who asked to remain unnamed, revealed That This move marks a reversal from a March 2023 resolution. At That time, the NBTC board Had agreed In principle to eliminate all conditions Of the “must Have” rule That covered the seven major sports competitions.

The plan to amend This rule was delayed until the conclusion Of the 2022 World Cup tournament In Qatar. In November 2022, the NBTC donated 600 million baht to the Sports Authority Of Thailand (SAT) to assist In raising the required 1.4 billion baht for the 2022 World Cup broadcasting rights.

The allocation Of matches later sparked conflicts between the NBTC, SAT, And True Corporation—a significant sponsor Of the broadcast rights purchase—And the Association Of Digital Television Broadcasting, along With IPTV operators, reported Bangkok Post.

It’s a case Of deja vu for Thai football enthusiasts who Had to witness a broadcasting merry-go-round before the 2022 World Cup In Qatar.

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