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The number of organisations vying for five new television channels up for grabs in Burma has narrowed slightly, according to a consultancy hired to choose from among the applicants.
“There were in total 44 applications and 42 were accepted,” said Chris Tun, founder of management advisory firm Tun Group Asia.
The five channels, which will be operated in partnership with the state-owned Myanmar Radio and Television (MRTV), will represent the first major expansion of broadcast offerings in Burma since the country enacted a new Broadcast Law last year.
However, the new channels will be designated as “content providers” for MRTV rather than as broadcasters, because under the new law, broadcast licenses can only be issued by a Broadcast Media Council that has yet to be formed.
MRTV announced in August that it would issue licenses for five free-to-air TV channels. The channels will be able to use 145 relay stations around Burma, reaching 88.7 percent of the country’s population.
DVB Multimedia and some major business conglomerates are among the contenders for the new channels.
The next step for the applicants is to submit proposals, after which they will be nominated for interviews with MRTV officials.
The new channels via the MRTV’s transmission infrastructure are tipped to begin broadcasting in May next year.