Online news portal FijiVillage reports that the country’s communications minister Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum has issued Digicel Fiji with a twelve-year pay-TV broadcasting licence, a spectrum licence and a ‘special licence’ to operate its recently acquired pay-TV provider Sky Pacific. The concession was issued on Monday, albeit with conditions. The minister says that under the terms of its permits, Digicel Fiji is barred from placing local advertisements and local content on Sky Pacific. Local content will only be allowed during natural disasters, he added. Further, Sayed-Khaiyum has said that Digicel will also be required to compensate customers if Sky Pacific goes off air for any period of time. He said there will be 24 channels on Sky Pacific, including a new channel called TV WAN. Digicel Fiji CEO Darren McLean welcomed the decision, but says a lot more work needs to be done to plan the transition from Fiji TV to Digicel ownership. TeleGeography notes that in September 2015 Digicel Group’s Fijian arm completed the acquisition of Sky Pacific, a division of Fiji Television, for FJD5.75 million (USD2.66 million), but said it was still awaiting the final Special Licence required to complete the takeover.
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