31 August 2005
The government is … committed to removing the restrictions of foreign
investment in commercial and pay television and amending the foreign
investment policy to remove specific restrictions on newspaper

14 March 2006 My objective here is to provide a richer set of services for consumers,
not less, while at the same time allowing some scale and scope with the
existing media players. So, if we can design the new services by next
year, I don’t see any reason why we can’t look at doing cross and
foreign then.

15 March 2006 Traditional media services are being challenged by new digital
technologies and this is resulting in the emergence of new players, new
content and new platforms… There is a compelling case for change and if
the government does not act, then there is a genuine risk that
Australia will become a dinosaur of the analogue age.

8 June 2006 I think the prime minister feels that there’s an expectation that we
actually move this on… It’s been talked about for so long – if we don’t
do cross and foreign (cross-media ownership and foreign ownership) it
will just become redundant.

8 June 2006 Once we have approval, there are nine or ten pieces of legislation
which will be required to implement the whole package, so we’ll be very
busy trying to get that done in the second half of this year. That is
an ambitious timetable, but if we aren’t ambitious, we’ll never get

19 June 2006 The situation is that the cross and media laws are certainly not the
centrepiece of this package. The centrepiece of the package is the move
to digital and the switching off of the analogue signal, which will
enable Australia to actually participate in what the rest of the world
is moving to, which is digital. But these are important adjuncts to the

20 June 2006 The media package always had alternatives as to two timeframes when
media changes might be introduced on cross and foreign …they certainly
will not be dumped and every media proprietor is very interested in
working through these issues.

27 June 2006 An end date hasn’t been decided by the government.

29 June 2006 If the government adopts the framework that I am proposing some of
these things will be through by the end of the year; some will require
further detail to be fleshed out.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey