UK Revokes License For Top Chinese Communist Party Media Outlet


U.K. regulators stripped China Global Television Network’s national broadcasting license.

The decision follows the U.K.’s Office of Communications (Ofcom) determining the license holder has “no editorial control” of China Global Television Network (CGTN), and that “the Chinese Communist Party is ultimately in charge of the satellite news channel.”

Ofcom identified two main problems with CGTN’s holding company, Star China Media Limited.

The company has no editorial oversight over CGTN’s programming and it also violates U.K. broadcasting laws that restrict political bodies from holding licenses:

Our investigation concluded that Star China Media Limited (SCML), the licence-holder for the CGTN service, did not have editorial responsibility for CGTN’s output. As such, SCML does not meet the legal requirement of having control over the licensed service, and so is not a lawful broadcast licensee.

In addition, we have been unable to grant an application to transfer the licence to an entity called China Global Television Network Corporation (CGTNC). This is because crucial information was missing from the application, and because we consider that CGTNC would be disqualified from holding a licence, as it is controlled by a body which is ultimately controlled by the Chinese Communist Party.

The decision follows Ofcom faulting CGTN for breaking U.K. policies in 2020 with biased coverage of Hong Kong protests and the airing of forced confessions.

Natalie Winters

Natalie Winters is freelance reporter.

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