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UK's Channel 4 flags privatisation would cost nearly $4 billion - The Times

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By Reuters
UK's Channel 4 flags privatisation would cost nearly $4 billion - The Times
UK's Channel 4 flags privatisation would cost nearly $4 billion - The Times   -   Copyright  Thomson Reuters 2022

– British broadcaster Channel 4 has warned the government its privatisation would cost the economy 3 billion pounds ($3.92 billion) and also put independent producers out of business, The Times reported on Friday.

The publicly owned but commercially-funded broadcaster presented Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries with documents laying out the drawbacks of a sale, the report said.

The documents set out an alternative to privatisation, giving Channel 4 access to private capital and preserve its public remit.

Dorries, however, rejected the proposals this week when she announced plans to privatise Channel 4 in the biggest sale of a state asset since the Royal Mail, the report said.

Channel 4 had said earlier this week that the UK government plans to sell the broadcaster, which was founded nearly 40 years ago. Last year, ministers had said privatisation would help secure the company’s future as a public service broadcaster.

The broadcaster warned the “gross value added” to its supply chain would be 3 billion pounds lower over the next decade if it was sold, according to The Times report, and also flagged “significant risks” associated with privatisation and that ministers would not make as much money as they predict.

Channel 4 did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

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