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MIB issues clarification; 26 percent FDI limit does not apply to OTT platforms streaming digital feed of TV news channels

MIB clarified "that when an OTT platform is hosting digital feed of a TV news channel granted permission under the extant Uplinking & Downlinking Guidelines, only as a medium and makes it available to its subscribers/users, such a OTT platform is not covered under the 26% FDI rule."

By  Storyboard18Mar 11, 2023 10:34 AM
MIB issues clarification; 26 percent FDI limit does not apply to OTT platforms streaming digital feed of TV news channels
when an OTT platform hosts the digital feed of a TV news channel (granted permission under the extant guidelines), the stipulation of FDI limit of 26% with government approval route would not apply to the OTT platform for the mere activity of hosting such feed (Representational image via Unsplash)

The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) has issued a clarification that when an OTT platform is only hosting a digital feed of a TV news channel which has uplink and downlink permission then such OTT platform is not covered under the 26 percent FDI (foreign direct investment) cap.

In 2019, the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) had capped FDI to 26 percent in aggregating, uploading, streaming of news and current affair content which could be interpreted that the TV news feed could not be hosted by OTT which has 26 percent foreign investment.

MIB has taken a positive step and on the request of stakeholders provided this clarification.

MIB's statement released today read, “TV news channels granted permission under the Uplinking and Downlinking Guidelines, 2022 (and the earlier Guidelines of 2005 of and 2011) of the ministry of information and broadcasting and their entities operating the digital news content are already covered by FDI policy of the central government. Accordingly, when an OTT platform hosts the digital feed of a TV news channel (granted permission under the extant guidelines), the stipulation of FDI limit of 26% with government approval route would not apply to the OTT platform for the mere activity of hosting such feed."

It added, "It is accordingly clarified that when an OTT platform is hosting digital feed of a TV news channel granted permission under the extant Uplinking & Downlinking Guidelines, only as a medium and makes it available to its subscribers/users, such a OTT platform is not covered under the 26% FDI rule."

First Published on Mar 10, 2023 6:32 PM