NR: Reforms for CBC/Radio-Canada

Published on November 23, 2016

Maxime Bernier Announces Reforms
for CBC/Radio-Canada

CBC/Radio-Canada would Focus on its Mandate Instead of Unfairly Competing with Struggling Private Broadcasters


November 23, 2016

For Immediate Release

OTTAWA – Maxime Bernier, Leadership Candidate for the Conservative Party of Canada, today announced his plan for reforming the CBC/Radio-Canada. 


As Prime Minister, Bernier would implement two concrete reforms to ensure that the CBC delivers quality content at a lower cost to Canadian taxpayers, while stopping the harm done to private media outlets by unfairly competing with them in the advertisement market.


First, Bernier would streamline the mandate of CBC. While the media landscape today comprises hundreds of broadcasters and enormous content on the Internet, CBC/Radio-Canada continues to occupy every niche even though it doesn’t have the means to do so. Its resources are also too concentrated in Toronto and Montreal at the expense of the rest of the country. 


The second reform is getting the public broadcaster out of the advertising market. Under Bernier’s plan, to replace its revenues from advertising, CBC/Radio-Canada would switch to a PBS/NPR model where support come from sponsors, and from viewer and listener contributions.


Key Quotes from Maxime Bernier


“CBC/Radio-Canada should stop doing three-quarters of what it still does, which any private broadcaster can do, and concentrate on what only it can do. To achieve this, my government will make changes to the Broadcasting Act to clarify and refocus the CBC mandate.”


“All private media outlets have had to make deep cuts and to lay off journalists by the hundreds in the past few years. Yet, after getting a head start with more than a billion dollars in taxpayers’ money, CBC/Radio-Canada unfairly competes with struggling private media in a shrinking advertisement market.”


“A Conservative government under my leadership will rescind the $150 million in additional annual funding announced by the current government. That will bring back public funding to $1 billion dollars, as it was last year. My government will also review the remaining funding in light of the more focused mandate and structure I just discussed, and of the state of public finances after several years of runaway spending and deficits by the Trudeau government. I cannot give any arbitrary number today, but I assume that the taxpayers’ contribution will be lower than one billion dollars.”