• Maurice Williamson

The Minister of Communications, Hon Maurice Williamson today announced that the Ministry of Commerce is seeking
applications for the use of reserved non-commercial television frequencies in the Wellington and Nelson regions.

In May last year the Government approved allocation criteria for the reserved frequencies and sought applications nationwide. There were three successful applications for the frequencies reserved for non-commercial television in Auckland, Christchurch
and Dunedin. These frequencies are in the ultra high frequency (UHF) bands.

At present, non-commercial frequencies remain unallocated in all other centres.

"The Ministry has already received an application for the unallocated frequencies in the Wellington and Nelson regions which warrants further consideration. The Ministry is now inviting further expressions of interest in these areas before any allocation
decision is considered" the Minister said.

The Ministry will assess all applications on the basis of the existing allocation criteria. Applicants must be able to demonstrate that their project is not for profit and that it will increase programming diversity for viewers in these regions.

"Access for local and regional programme makers will also be important," Mr Williamson said.

Other criteria include provision of non-commercial services which are not being provided on a national level and the extent to which time is made available for non-commercial uses, including in prime time.

Use of the reserved frequencies may be licensed for periods of up to five years.

Groups interested in the non-commercial UHF frequencies in the Wellington and Nelson regions should contact the Ministry of Commerce to request an information pack. This information is also available on the Ministry of Commerce's web site: http//

Applications for these frequencies close on 10 October 1997.