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Hungary committed to analogue switch-off date

Hungary has no plans to put back its analogue switch off date (ASO) from the current December 31, 2011. However, it will continue to monitor the situation internationally, Broadband TV News reports. The news was given by Éva Menyhárt Vasváriné, deputy under secretary, ministry of national development, and Gábor Mátrai, the VP of the new National Media and Telecoms Authority (NMHH), in the opening session of the annual HCA/HCTA cable conference in Tihany, Hungary.

When asked about the upcoming (and controversial) new media law, they denied that the cable industry is not being listened to: although the two associations were not contacted in the consultation on the first reading of the law, which was passed in August, they have been on the second stage, due to be passed next month.

Several other key points emerged on the digital switchover process during the session. Firstly, ASO will be undertaken in Hungary on a stage-by-stage basis, with the government having already formulated a strategy for its implementation. Secondly, the government does not envisage Antenna Hungária having to face any competition in the DTT sector in the future, and thirdly, the more needy members of society will have to apply for subsidies for digital reception equipment. (BBJ)