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Last Updated: Wednesday, 2 March 2005, 13:53 GMT
At-a-glance: Future of the BBC
The government has outlined its plans for the future running of the BBC. Here are the main points:

BBC charter

  • The BBC's royal charter will run for another ten years, until 2016.

    BBC governors
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  • The board of governors will be scrapped.

  • It will replaced by two bodies - the BBC Trust and an Executive Board.

  • Current BBC chairman Michael Grade will be the first chairman of the trust, which will represent the licence fee payer and will be responsible for ensuring the BBC's independence.

  • The trust will have significant levels of approval over BBC budgets and strategies.

  • It will also have the power to approve licences for BBC services, testing them on behalf of the public.

    The new body will have to be accountable to licence fee payers, including broadcasting meetings on the internet.

  • The board will look after the day-to-day running of the BBC, and will be headed by current director general Mark Thompson.

    Licence fee

  • The licence fee will stay in place for the next 10 years.

  • The government will decide on the right level for the fee after 2007, and will look at alternative ways of funding the BBC after 2016, including subscriptions.

  • The possibility of sharing the licence fee with other public broadcasters will be considered during the life of the next charter.

  • The licence fee should be used for creative purposes, using the best talent.

    Programme making

  • The BBC should not chase ratings for ratings' sake, and its output should not clash with its commercial rivals.

  • The number of independent productions should be increased as the corporation has exclusive access to licence fee funding.

  • There should be specific programming for the UK's different communities, and significant output made outside London.

  • The BBC is expected to take a leading role in the development of digital services in the UK, including the proposed analogue switch-off.

  • The BBC will also fund schemes to help fund schemes for vunerable consumers during this period.

    Other regulators

  • Broadcast regulator Ofcom will be given increased powers to assess the performance of the BBC, including assessing the impact of any proposed new services.




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