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ATV is "DEAD", HK Government denied ATV license renewal!

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Source: The Standard

Images: The Sun

Youtube: Appledaily

 

 

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The Chief Executive in Council has refused to renew the license for the troubled broadcaster when it expires on November 30 this year, putting a final nail in the coffin for Hong Kong's oldest broadcaster.

 

The government yesterday notified ATV that it will be given until April 1, 2016, to operate with its spectrum revoked on the same date. Up to 700 employees will be made redundant.

The decision on the fate of the 58-year-old station came amid a 24-hour rollercoaster ride, with ATV announcing on air on Tuesday night that it had secured a "white knight" investor in HKTV's Ricky Wong Wai-kay. But Wong denied yesterday there was any such deal. Then came news yesterday morning of another mystery investor signing a deal with major ATV shareholder Wong Ching. But this investor is unlikely to push through with the transaction as the memorandum of agreement hinged on an ATV license renewal.

 

Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Gregory So Kam- leung said Exco had "considered all relevant developments and facts, including the news bulletin by ATV last night and the clarification from HKTV." He revealed that eight minutes past midnight yesterday he received a letter that "a few people had an indicative offer for ATV but there was no mention of a deal." He said the non-renewal decision was "well-deliberated" and that ATV was given enough time to submit its restructuring plan by Tuesday's deadline.

 

Accountancy firm Deloitte was appointed by the courts to oversee the station. In November, ATV requested leeway until the end of last month to give it time to develop a restructuring plan. On January 2, Deloitte asked the Executive Council not to make a final decision because of the ongoing restructuring. After seeking legal advice, the government gave ATV until March 31 to make its proposals. "By the deadline, no specific proposals were made by ATV on restructuring," So said. "The CE in Council also considered the request in the submission for the extension of the deadline and the information made available this afternoon, but was not satisfied that a sufficient case has been put forward to justify any further extension of time."

 

It is the first time in broadcasting history that an existing license was not renewed. So and Communications Authority head Ambrose Ho Pui-him warned that if ATV committed another serious breach of the law within the next 12 months, its license will be revoked immediately. The government will set up a task force to ensure the speedy resolution of various issues and to minimize any adverse impact of the non-renewal decision. The government has invited RTHK to provide an analogue TV service channel to give audiences one more choice from April 1 next year up to 2020. "For the spare spectrum, we will look at the entire situation and work according to Broadcasting Ordinance and spectrum policies to decide how to allocate them," So said. "Currently we cannot tell how we are going to arrange it." So said if ATV closes down before the scheduled timetable, RTHK will take over the service.

 

Calling yesterday "the darkest day in Hong Kong," ATV's major investor Wong Ching said he was not surprised by the license renewal failure. He attributed it to "a series of conspiracy and deception regarding the sale of the shares of ATV in these two years." He added it was "the price paid by a conscientious media station."

Edited by GTR

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Won't can't believe after all these years a Big TV channel like that would come to an end. Who would have thought the biggest rival for TVB will be gone like that.

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I don't watch ATV series (and been skipping a good chunk of TVB ones the last year,) but the government shouldn't not renew their license. So many people will be jobless.

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Goodbye ATV. so long! I think you needed to up your dramas

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oh wow... politics at play maybe?? TVB had a hand in them getting denied.???

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ATV don't have any production. Just news is good for everyone. I agree ATV lose the licence.

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oh well, atv isnt popular so it makes sense for the liscense to not be renewed. theyre not making good series so people arent watching them

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i didn't really care for atv..but now maybe the better actors will go over to tvb along with better writers etc,.

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This sucks for hong kong now since there only have tvb to watch. The HK government(Chinese government) really sucks.

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Wow that sucks, its a shame for atv to be closing down.

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Really, I heard from my mom that ATV had recently found a new investor and that they were negotiating

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compeitition is good. sad to see the compeitition gone but not ATV. There needs to be another channel

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I feel sorry for ATV.. Most of the people in hong kong watch tvb more than ATV since there isn't a lot of good shows or series in ATV... Maybe it is a good thing if they close down ATV..

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this is quite the shame to see that atv will come to an end. it used to produce a lot of good quality shows. i don't even remember when and why atv started to produce less tv shows and more and more actors were leaving the company. quite sad though

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Found a buyer............what a waste of money though. People have given up on ATV long ago.

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So bad, but honestly I don't watch any of its shows. Now TVB will be the only network, I hope they don't bring up crap shows since they don't have competitor.

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This was bound to happen. They should grant HKTV their license

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finally say bye bye to atv they have been struggling for long time i hope the govement will give new licence to HKTV...!!!

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this is just horrible news, TVB monopoly ftw sucks...

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They must have some reason for not giving license to hong kong tv. might be that reason is too sensitive.

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One less competitor in Hong Kong. Sad to hear such news. What was the problem with them to deserve non-renewal?

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