February 2015

TARIFF ORDER FOR NEW PAY CHANNELS ON ANALOG NETWORKS



BACKGROUND

On December 31, 2014, the TRAI declared "The Telecommunication (Broadcasting & Cable) Services (Second) Tariff ( T h i r t e e n t h Amendment) Order, 2014." This order provided revised retail tariff ceilings, for analog Cable TV Networks, to compensate for inflation over the years.


This Revised Tariff Order Is Only For Analog Cable TV Networks

However, the above order did not address a few cases which have been detailed in a January 6, 2015 amendment notified as the "The Telecommunication (Broadcasting And Cable) Services (Second) Tariff (Fourteenth Amendment) Order, 2015."




REVISED TARIFF AMENDMENTS

The revised tariff order notified on 6th January 2015, details the following key issues, not addressed earlier.



1. A-LA-CARTE CHANNELS

In 2007 the TRAI made it compulsory for broadcasters to offer their channels also on a-la-carte, to analog cable TV networks. The TRAI has retained this requirement, along with the same limits between the bouquet & and a-la-carte rates.



2. PRICE AFTER BOUQUET BREAKUP

The revised tariff order also addresses the pricing of new channels and channels converted from free-to-air to pay.

In 2014, the TRAI mandated that pay channels cannot be bundled by distributors, across multiple pay channel broadcasters. As an example, TheOneAlliance cannot bundle channels from SET and Discovery, in a single bouquet.

This has led to the breakup of almost all Pay Channel bouquets offered in 2014.

The January 6, 2015 revised tariff order clearly specifies the maximum prices that can be charged, in the new bouquets.

The TRAI has illustrated the "Reconfiguration Of Bouquets" by the following example:



3. EARLY SHIFT TO DAS

The TRAI has specifically clarified that in cases where analog cable TV networks migrate to Digital Addressable Systems (DAS) before the cutoff dates notified by the Government, the regulatory regime pertaining to VAS will apply and that the broadcaster will have to declare the genre of the channels from amongst the specified genres. n