Nepal implements Clean Feed Policy; foreign TV channels to be ad-free

Kathmandu: The clean-feed policy in television broadcasting systems in Nepal has been implemented starting Friday midnight, barring international advertisers from publishing advertisements in foreign television channels.

The Clean Feed Policy, announced last year, had set a deadline of October 23, 2020, for all cable operators to make the arrangements for continued broadcast or block the broadcast of those channels failing to do so.

As a result, many of the foreign channels, dominantly Indian channels have been taken off the air with TV screens flashing the notice about the provision mentioned in the newly implemented policy.

In a press briefing organized earlier this week, Minister for Information and Communication, Parbat Gurung hailed the new provision as a ‘historic decision’.

Advertisement Regulations Act- 2019 as well as Regulations 2020, in effect from early hours of 24th October 2020- advertising-free- Clean Feed Policy goes into effect and it is informed to all. It is also requested to all for their support in this act. The decision of implementing clean feed in Nepal is historic and we have been working on it since 2016 by holding discussions, drafting- regulations and amending or introducing various clauses,” Communication Minister Gurung said.

The new policy allows television signal distributors to replace advertisements in foreign television channels with local advertisements as practised in most developed countries.

“Apart from a few exceptions, almost all of the foreign channels carry commercials made by multinationals and conglomerates for which Nepali viewers are paying monthly charges, while the domestic advertising industry is shrinking. Hence, the need for implementation of clean feed,” states the policy.

As per policy, Nepali viewers pay Direct-to-Home Satellite Television service providers a monthly charge and are thus also exposed to foreign commercials.