Chris Elmore, MP for Ogmore, is calling on the UK Tory Government to protect British values and institutions by stopping the Channel 4 sell off to secure the future of one of Britain’s cultural crown jewels.
The case for privatisation was last examined by the UK Tory Government as recently as 2016. It found then that “Channel 4’s public service model and remit… would not be best served by privatisation”. Despite it not being in their manifesto, overwhelming opposition from industry, the public (91% of responses to the consultation opposed privatisation) and Parliament, the Government has taken against Channel 4’s political coverage, and chosen to act ideologically to privatise them.
The Conservatives Channel 4 sell off plan could kill off independent film production, damaging British cultural influence at home and abroad. Channel 4’s unique public service remit has propelled British film making and talent onto the world stage at no cost to the public, bringing more jobs to the nations and regions that make up the UK.
Chris Elmore, MP for Ogmore, said:
“Earlier this month we saw the nation come together to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee. Broadcasters such as the BBC and Channel 4 played an important role in televising this momentous occasion around the country and the world, yet the Tories want to sell off Channel 4 in an act of cultural vandalism.
This Tory decision shows they are not serious about levelling up our country, with British made programming and regional industries now put at risk. This act will also seriously hamper our ability to promote British culture globally.
Channel 4 plays a unique role in British broadcasting which costs the public nothing, investing its profits into commissioning new programming around the UK, creating good jobs in our regions and discovering new talent. Privatising Channel 4 puts all of these benefits at risk and must be stopped at all costs.
This unnecessary privatisation is also a huge distraction from the cost of living crisis facing families. The UK Government should be focusing its energy on helping families make ends meet, not pursuing its own petty vendetta against a broadcaster whose news content the Tories don’t like.”