TV3 objects to UTV Ireland licence
According to The Sunday Times, TV3 is seeking clarity from the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) on what it claims is a loophole in the legislation that may allow the new UTV Ireland channel to escape the obligations placed on TV3 and RTE. Industry sources say UTV Ireland should be licenced as an 'opt-out' service regulated by Ofcom.
A growing number of UK television channels offer Irish 'opt-outs', with identical programmes but separate advertising blocks.
However, UTV Ireland is not planned to be a complete simulcast of UTV Northern Ireland - which is part of the Channel 3/ITV network, although many ITV flagship shows Coronation Street and Emmerdale would be carried on the new channel - programmes currently shown by TV3.
A decision on UTV's Irish TV licence application could be reached within the next 6-8 weeks, according to the report.
TV3 is the Irish Republic's only major commercial TV operator.
In November, UTV confirmed that it would make the new Irish channel available on "as many platforms as possible" within the Irish Republic.
UTV to launch new channel in Ireland 06/11/2013