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IRIS 2010-9:1/12

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Recent Developments in PBS Transition to Digital Broadcasting

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Maida Ćulahović

Communications Regulatory Agency

On 14 July 2010 Vijeće ministara Bosne i Hercegovine (the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina) adopted a Decision endorsing the Project of the digitalisation of public broadcasting service microwave links. The Project is aimed at building a new, modern system for digital transmission of radio and TV programmes and increasing network capacity for a bilateral and multilateral exchange of programmes among the three public broadcasting services in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), as well as programmes from the neighbouring countries.

In April 2010 Regulatorna agencija za komunikacije (the Communications Regulatory Agency) established terms and conditions for the utilisation of Multiplex A (MUX A) by public broadcasting services for terrestrial digital television broadcasting during the transition period. Public broadcasting services in BiH are thus enabled to launch the process of transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting through shared building and usage of synchronous assignments in the digital allotments.

The process of transition of public broadcasting services in BiH to digital broadcasting is however not expected to be without difficulties. There are concerns over the funding of the above mentioned Project threatening to delay the entire digitalisation process.

Issues that remain to be addressed also concern the unfinished reform of the public service broadcasting system. Zakon o javnom radiotelevizija kom sistemu (Law on the Public Broadcasting System) namely stipulates the creation of a Corporation of Public Broadcasting Services as an umbrella organisation over all three public broadcasting services in the country. Once established, the Corporation would be in charge of, among other things, the joint operation of the transmission network and the introduction of new technologies including digital terrestrial broadcasting (see IRIS 2009-9:7/8).

The national Strategy on the Digital Switchover in BiH sees public broadcasting services as leading stakeholders in the process of transition to digital broadcasting due to their traditionally central position in the BiH broadcasting market but also to their important role in providing universally available services which can help bridge the digital divide.

Donesena Odluka o usvajanju Projekta digitalizacije BS
  Press release on the Decision on the Endorsement of the Digitalisation Project      
Decision on the manners of utilisation of Multiplex A (MUX A) by public broadcasting services for terrestrial digital television broadcasting in transition period, BiH Official Gazette No. 38/10 of 10 May 2010
Strategy on the digital switch-over within the frequency bands of 174-230MHz and 470-862MHz in Bosnia and Herzegovina EN