In its response to the Welsh Affairs Select Committee Report on S4C – published today, alongside the Department for Culture, Media and Sport’s response to the Report – the Channel welcomes the Committee’s support for its operational and editorial independence under proposed new arrangements with the BBC.
S4C states in its response that, “S4C believes it is important that its editorial and operational independence is maintained so that S4C can best serve Welsh language audiences.”
S4C also welcomes the DCMS’s response to the Report, which states that, “There is no intention of removing S4C as a statutory body nor merging it with the BBC. S4C’s current public service remit, as enshrined in legislation, will remain and it will be the Secretary of State not the BBC who will continue to exercise powers of appointment over the Chair and of the S4C Authority.”
The Committee’s Report made a number of other recommendations regarding the management and accountability of S4C, which the Channel is already in the process of implementing as part of a comprehensive review of the organisation.
The Committee’s support comes at the end of a positive week for S4C. It follows a statement by the Secretary of State, the Right Hon Jeremy Hunt MP, on Monday that the Public Bodies Bill would be amended to ensure S4C receives sufficient funding to fulfil its statutory role as an independent Welsh language broadcaster.
During the Second Reading of the Public Bodies Bill in the House of Commons on Tuesday, MPs from all four main parties also stated their commitment to an independent S4C.