Government discusses media ownership laws

Communications Minister Jimmy Miringtoro says discussions are underway for media ownership laws for Papua New Guniea.

He told LOOP News that the government does not want the media industry to be monopolized by foreign companies.

He says the law will require media companies to share a percentage of ownership with the people of Papua New Guniea through the government.

“We are discussing details of percentage ownership, content and other issues we are concerned about” said Miringtoro.

He said there is growing concern that competition in the communications sector would be crushed if large foreign conglomerates begin to monopolize the market.

"We will not allow one dominant player in the Papua New Guinea communications market as this is not fair on the people of our nation,” he says

“Given enough power these large companies can force out the smaller phone, television, radio and newspaper platforms, and then expand to other areas such as advertising.

“When one company has a monopoly over multiple media platforms they could potentially take the market for granted and charge much higher prices to our people,” he added.

Miringtoro says he is particularly concerned at the way the rights to broadcast NRL has been taken away from a free-to-air television station and given to a pay television broadcaster.

“For decades Papua New Guineans have been able to watch rugby league on free-to-air television,” he says 

Joy Kisselpar