The News Broadcasters Association (NBA) has asked for the removal of 18% GST on advertisements on broadcast media or reduce to 5%.
In a letter address to Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, NBA said, âTo ensure social distancing from the spread of the virus and for ensuring the safety of the editorial personnel, the news broadcasters have had to take various steps /make alternate arrangements within and outside the premises for news gathering/ reporting purposes. This has resulted in the operating costs of news broadcasters during the current pandemic/lockdown having gone up exponentially.â
Highlighting how advertising agencies are putting huge pressure to defer the payments to broadcasters and to allow more time over and above the 60 days credit period, NBA said the recovery of bills is going to be hugely challenging while facing an even bigger task of almost zero or negligible income in the next 30-90 days.
âWhile the news broadcasters are coping with the financial problems of recovery of dues, we are also faced with serious problems of advertising inventory/ release orders being cancelled and inventory bookings being than 50% for even the top-rated news channels. Poor recovery and lack of future income would mean that the news broadcasters would have to weather the
storm for two /three quarters and hope for a partial recovery towards the end of the financial year,â the association said.