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IRIS 2010-8:1/45


The New Swedish Authority for Radio and TV

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Michael Plogell and Erik Ullberg

Wistrand Advokatbyrå, Gothenburg

On 15 June 2010 the Swedish parliament passed the bill for a new Radio and Television Act (Radio- och TV-lagen - SFS 2010:696) (see IRIS 2010-5:1/36). The bill includes, amongst other things, the merger of the Granskningsnämnden för Radio och TV (Swedish Broadcasting Commission) and the Radio- och TV-verket (Swedish Radio and TV Authority) into a newly formed authority named the Myndigheten för Radio och TV (Authority for Radio and TV).

The Swedish Broadcasting Commission and the Swedish Radio and TV Authority both act within the same media field. Due to the rapid development within this field a more efficient and competent administrative handling is required. The main reason for the merger of the two authorities is to create a more coherent administration, which will result in increased efficiency. Hence, the new authority will hereafter perform both the Swedish Broadcasting Commission’s and the Swedish Radio and TV Authority’s tasks in accordance with the new legislation. The increased efficiency will hopefully release funding, which can be used in the authority’s core activities, such as the supervision which up to now was performed by the Swedish Broadcasting Commission.

Currently, the Swedish Broadcasting Commission, amongst its other tasks, supervises compliance of radio and TV broadcasts with the Radio and Television Act and authorises companies’ (programbolagen) transmission licenses. Within the framework of this task the Swedish Broadcasting Commission executes inspections after reports from the public or on its own initiative. These inspections need to be carried out by an independent agency, since the agency will carry out tasks similar to those of a court. Therefore, even after the merger between the two authorities, there will remain an independent agency within the new authority charged with carrying out such inspections. Furthermore, this agency will, due to the new Radio and Television Act, supervise on-demand TV (beställ-tv) and teletext.

Moreover, the new authority will, as did the old Swedish Radio and TV Authority, decide on questions relating to fees, transmission licenses and registrations required for broadcasting. The authority will also be responsible for observing the media development and issuing its findings to the public.

Consequently, there are no material changes in practice to be expected as a result of the merger.

The new Radio and Television Act enters into force on 1 August 2010.

Radio- och tv-lagen (SFS 2010:696) SV
  Swedish Radio and Television Act (SFS 2010:696)