§ Dr. McDonald
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will publish in the Official Report his reasons for the oversight of community radio, particularly in respect of political balance, for the two-year experimental period; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Giles Shaw
Community radio is being established on an experimental basis, and we shall therefore want to undertake research into its output and impact with a view to taking informed decisions about its future. In addition, as the experimental stations will broadcast under licences issued by the Department, the question of their adherence to the conditions of their licences will be my right hon. Friend's responsibility. However, as the published guidance notes for prospective licensees make clear, there will be no obligation on them to balance programmes expressing political points of view.