Thu, Nov 05, 2009 - Page 4 News List

NCC rejects BCC’s request to split up

ENTANGLEMENT The communications watchdog said the BCC had to resolve its legal wrangles before its application to split its operations could be considered

By Shelley Shan  /  STAFF REPORTER

The National Communications Commission (NCC) yesterday rejected an application by the Broadcasting Corporation of China (BCC) to split into a radio station and an asset management company.

NCC spokesperson Chen Jeng-chang (陳正倉) said the company had yet to resolve an administrative lawsuit that had been brought by the Executive Yuan as well as legal disputes with the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) over BCC’s property holdings.

“Since the company remains entangled in so many unresolved lawsuits, the commission decided not to grant approval to the company’s application,” Chen said.

During its review of the application, the commission invited BCC chairman Jaw Shaw-kong (趙少康) to explain why the company needed to establish a property management firm, Chen said.

“He [Jaw] said the company’s strength lay in its radio broadcast capabilities and that it did not have much experience handling property assets,” Chen said. “But the company had acquired so much real estate over the years that a need arose for a land management firm.”

The NCC said the Government Information Office (GIO) issued an administrative ruling in 2004 regarding some of BCC’s properties that were allegedly owned by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT).

One of the conditional clauses in the ruling was that BCC could not dispose of its properties before its lawsuits with the MOTC had been settled.

After the NCC was established in 2006, it annulled the clause, ruling that while the GIO had been entitled to launch an investigation into BCC’s properties to determine if some were in fact owned by the KMT, the GIO was not justified in ordering BCC to freeze all of its accounts and properties.

The NCC’s ruling was annulled by the Executive Yuan in 2007. Meanwhile, BCC disagreed with the Executive Yuan’s ruling in 2007 and filed an administrative appeal to the Executive Yuan, which dismissed the appeal. BCC then filed an administrative lawsuit at the Taipei High Administrative Court, which has not yet ruled on the case.

Huang Chin-yi (黃金益), deputy director of the NCC’s operational administration department, said that both the administrative lawsuit and the property lawsuits had to be settled before the commission could review BCC’s division application.

“The commission asked BCC to meet several requirements before it conditionally approved the transfer of BCC’s shares to Jaw two years ago, including having its shares traded in public within two years,” Huang said. “The company remains unable to meet this criterion because it is involved in so many lawsuits.”

Huang said that although BCC’s administrative lawsuit with the Executive Yuan seemed more crucial, the unresolved property lawsuits with the MOTC might still prevent it from meeting the NCC’s requirements.

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