'Halve TV licence fee': petition
A petition calling for a reduction of about 50 percent of the annual Swiss TV and radio fees has been delivered to the government, reports said.
The initiative, backed by the Swiss People’s Party, is calling for the licence fees to amount to a maximum of 200 francs ($225) per year, almost half of what they are now, said a report on the daily 20 Minuten. Signatures were collected mainly online.
The petition, which is not binding on the government, also argues that the fee should not be mandatory for households or businesses that do not own a television or a radio.
The move is aimed at putting pressure on the Swiss parliament to cut the fees for the publicly-owned Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SRG SSR). In a statement, the media company said it provides services on behalf of the general public, adding that it is a non-profit organisation, existing “exclusively to fulfill a public service remit.”
Most of SRG SSR's budget is provided by licence fee income, followed by sponsorship, advertising revenues and other commercial income, the company said.