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Private radio stations face new measures

Private radio stations face new measures. (AFP)

By Abdel Hai Mohamed

There are no plans to issue further broadcasting licences to members of foreign communities wishing to set up radio stations in the UAE, Saqr Ghubash Saeed Ghubash, Minister of Labour and Chairman of the National Media Council, has revealed.

He told the Federal National Council that there was already an adequate number of such community stations.

The minister was responding to complaints from a number of FNC members that some of the expat stations posed a threat to the UAE politically, militarily, socially and culturally.

The members called for tougher supervision of private broadcasters.

But Ghubash said: "Radio is a very important means of addressing the many segments of the communities living in the UAE and the best stations use such broadcasts to pass on our information and serve the objectives of our country.

"Any abuses by these radio stations will be investigated, but the media in the UAE is characterised by diversity and this is a good thing that we should encourage."

He said in the media age no country could prevent its citizens from viewing or listening to any TV or radio channels.

He added that the council was working with the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority to tackle the lack of a radio signal in some parts of the country. "There are complicated technical problems behind this but they will be overcome soon."

Ghubash said the council had submitted plans to the Cabinet for a project to measure the negative impact of some satellite TV programmes on children.


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