FDI In Broadcasting Sector Of India Under Consolidated FDI Policy Of India 2012

This is in continuance of our series on consolidated FDI policy of India 2012 by DIPP. The previous articles in this regard are

(1) Consolidated FDI policy of India 2012 by DIPP: objectives,

(2) Consolidated FDI policy of India 2012 by DIPP: definitions,

(3) Consolidated FDI policy of India 2012 by DIPP: general provisions,

(4) FDI in limited liability partnerships (LLPs) in India 2012,

(5) Permissible direct and indirect foreign investment in an Indian company,

(6) Foreign investment promotion board (FIPB) and FDI policy of India 2012,

(7) Prohibited sectors under the consolidated FDI policy of India 2012,

(8) FDI in agriculture and animal husbandry under consolidated FDI policy of India 2012,

(9) FDI in mining sector of India under consolidated FDI policy of India 2012,

(10) FDI in petroleum and natural gas sector of India under consolidated FDI policy of India 2012

(11) FDI in micro and small enterprises (MSEs) sector of India under consolidated FDI policy of India 2012

(12) FDI in defence sector of India under consolidated FDI policy of India 2012

In this article Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) would discuss the provisions pertaining to FDI in broadcasting sector of India under consolidated FDI policy of India 2012.

FDI in terrestrial broadcasting FM (FM Radio) subject to such terms and conditions as specified from time to time by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for grant of permission for setting up of FM Radio Stations would be allowed up to 26% (FDI, NRI & PIO investments and portfolio investment) through government approval route.

FDI in Cable Network, subject to Cable Television Network Rules, 1994 and other conditions as specified from time to time by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting would be allowed up to 49% (FDI, NRI & PIO investments and portfolio investment) through government approval route.

FDI in Direct–to-Home subject to such guidelines/terms and conditions as specified from time to time by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting would be allowed up to 49% (FDI, NRI & PIO investments and portfolio investment) (Within this limit, FDI component not to exceed 20%) with government approval route.

Headend-In-The-Sky (HITS) Broadcasting Service refers to the multichannel downlinking and distribution of television programme in C-Band or Ku Band wherein all the pay channels are downlinked at a central facility (Hub/teleport) and again uplinked to a satellite after encryption of channel. At the cable headend these encrypted pay channels are downlinked using a single satellite antenna, transmodulated and sent to the subscribers by using a land based transmission system comprising of infrastructure of cable/optical fibres network.

FDI limit in (HITS) Broadcasting Service is subject to such guidelines/terms and conditions as specified from time to time by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. FDI is allowed up to 74% (total direct and indirect foreign investment including portfolio and FDI) where FDI up to 49% would be through automatic route and beyond 49% but up to 74% it would be allowed through government approval route.

For setting up of Up-linking HUB/ Teleports FDI would be allowed up to 49% (FDI & FII) with government approval route. For Up-linking a Non-News and Current Affairs TV Channel FDI would be allowed up to 100% through government approval route. For Up-linking a News and Current Affairs TV Channel subject to the condition that the portfolio investment from FII/ NRI shall not be ―persons acting in concert with FDI investors, as defined in the SEBI (Substantial Acquisition of Shares and Takeovers) Regulations, 1997, FDI would be allowed up to 26% (FDI & FII) through government approval route.

The following conditions must also be satisfied:

(i) All the activities mentioned above will be further subject to the condition that the Company permitted to uplink the channel shall certify the continued compliance of this requirement through the Company Secretary at the end of each financial year.

(ii) FDI for Up-linking TV Channels will be subject to compliance with the Up-linking Policy notified by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting from time to time.