HC Deb 22 November 1999 vol 339 c53W
28. Mrs. Virginia Bottomley

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what steps he is taking to promote public confidence in his Department's political impartiality with regard to media regulation and ownership. [98994]

Mr. Chris Smith

Provisions on media ownership and regulation are set out in the Broadcasting Acts 1990 and 1996. The media industry is also subject to general competition law such as merger control under the Fair Trading Act 1973.

Implementation of these provisions is a matter for the relevant independent regulators, not the Government. Political impartiality in broadcast content is provided for by the regulators through a range of mechanisms such as the BBC Charter, licence conditions and programme codes.

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