It’s time our money was put to better use!
From the BBC’s own web site
“A conundrum in public service broadcasting is how to ensure that a publicly–funded broadcaster can remain independent from political control. The licence fee is a necessary, if not sufficient, part of the solution. It ensures that it is the British people who pay for the BBC, not the government.”
Ten years ago, in 2008, 11 MPs tabled an early day motion regarding the EU funding of the BBC.
Soft loans and payments amounting to 258 million euros over the previous five years were paid by the EU to the BBC. Such payments surely compromised the independence and objectivity of the BBC? The BBC allegedly also benefited by a cash equivalent of approximately 39 million euros which was made up of 20.4 million actual saved interest on loan facilities of 240 million, 2.5 million in grants, 14.6 million to BBC World and 1.7 million euros in indirect payments. Further undisclosed sums in respect of joint projects no doubt breaches the BBC’s Royal Charter, which demands independence and states that the BBC should not ‘accept funds from any organisation whose interests or actions could raise doubts about the objectivity of programming’.
This motion called on the Government to establish an independent inquiry into EU funding of the BBC and its impact on the BBC’s objectivity on European matters and the debate, at the time, on a referendum. It would appear that this motion was never heard.
According to the BBC’s own editorial guideline policy, “The BBC should not normally enter into a partnership with a foreign government. Relationships with UK government departments, religious organisations, charities, and organisation which undertake lobbying should also be treated with care to ensure our impartiality is not undermined.”
In the financial year 2013/14 the BBC took £878,000, while in 2014/15 it received £778,000 from the EU. The broadcaster has received £476,000 (2015/16) but may be larger.
The BBC has admitted taking more than £2 million in European Union funding over the past three years, but said it had taken the cash under the European Union framework programme, to fund its research and development arm, which is working on projects such as 3D broadcasting, and ultra-high definition filming.
According to the European Union web site on funding, for the period 2017-18, the BBC has been given a grant of 1,282,331 euros.
In 2015, the BBC was given 19,325,735 euros.
In 2016, the BBC was given 6,806,536 euros.
The BBC also gives annual funding to the ‘think tank’ Chatham House of between £25,000 and £50,000; and The Social Market Foundation, another ‘think tank’ whose object, they say, is to advance the education of the public in public policy, one Director of which is Nicky Morgan, MP and supposedly ‘the best think tank’ according to John Major! However, they are given charitable status but that will become more clear in our next article!
British Media Action, founded in 1999, is supposedly an independent charity that works on international development and embraces the BBC’s values! However, 4 BBC employees are trustees of the charity and they work in partnership with the BBC World Service (known to have received EU funding) and other parts of the BBC. They admit that although they benefit from access to BBC people and infrastructure, none of the work is directly funded by the Licence Fee?? However all staff employed on a continuing basis by British Media Action have employment contracts with the BBC.
In 2016, they received EU funding of 2,409,751 euros.
In 2017, they received EU funding of 12,000,000 euros.
As of 31st March, 2018 the charity had net assets of £54.4m. Gross income was £35,900,000.
The BBC, as well as the EU and others, provide substantial funding as seen below.
How can they state to be independent and of charitable status???