Tue, Aug 10, 2010 - Page 2 News List

NCC to hear proposal this month on splitting up BCC

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff Reporter

The National Communications Commission (NCC) will hold a hearing later this month to decide whether to approve a proposal by the Broadcasting Corp of China (BCC) to split up its operations into a radio station and an asset management firm.

However, unlike the hearing it held on the Want Want Group’s purchase of the China Times Group last year, the commission does not plan to invite any civic interest groups to attend the Aug. 27 hearing to voice their thoughts on the matter.

Information on the commission’s Web site showed that only representatives from the BCC and the Ministry of Transportation and Communications — what the commission characterizes as the stakeholders — have been asked to attend the hearing.

A commission source said that because there were only two stakeholders in this case, the commissioners would focus on the statements delivered by the BCC and the ministry.

However, the source said if the BCC’s proposal was approved, its properties would essentially be out of the commission’s purview. He said this was a major case and should include as many different voices as possible.

Former commission chairperson Bonnie Peng (彭芸) said in her farewell speech earlier this month that during her two years at the commission, she had helped facilitate the participation of civic groups in policy-making.

The planned hearing seems inconsistent with the spirit of civic engagement established by Peng.

The commission rejected the BCC’s initial application last year on the grounds that it was still entangled in property lawsuits with the ministry.

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

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

After its application was rejected by the commission last year, the BCC appealed the case to the Executive Yuan, which annulled the commission’s administrative ruling.

The Executive Yuan also asked the commission to review the case again and rule according to the law.

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