World Association of News Publishers

Supporting the media – State measures around the world

Supporting the media – State measures around the world


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The foreword, by Elena Perotti, Executive Director of Media Policy and Public Affairs, WAN-IFRA:

The first step toward the production of this report was taken in November 2016, when one of our association members in Latin America wrote to us with an urgent request. That country's authorities were discussing a controversial tax reform that would, if approved, seriously impact the newspaper industry. Our colleagues needed to find out urgently what was happening around the world in matters of newspaper industry taxation, particularly VAT, in order to use compelling examples in their lobbying activities.

We soon discovered that material on the topic was very difficult to find, and that even in Europe, an overview on VAT rates applied to newspapers did not exist. Reduced VAT rates are a common way for governments to provide support to the press, but early on in our research, we decided to expand to also investigate other forms of support, direct and indirect, that were granted to the press in the different countries.

All the potential sources we talked to showed great excitement at the idea of a global outlook into state measures aiming to provide financial support to the news media. Thanks to a lucky turn of events at the end of 2016, WAN-IFRA's Media Policy department had the unusual availability of a little funding, which we invested in securing the collaboration of Ilaria, a great legal researcher. We started with a small investigation using internal resources, then moved to interlocutory e-mails and finally put together a proper survey, which you can find in appendix at the end of this report. Teemu and I threw all the power of our contacts into the project, from member-association directors, to World Press Trends contributors, to academics, lawyers and even just industry friends around the world.

The result of this teamwork is now in your hands. Far from covering the globe, this report indeed represents a comprehensive effort at an outlook on the different ways the news media is supported by the public sector the world over.

We hope this report will enable our members to compare their local situations with the global trends on this increasingly topical issue, and to fine-tune their lobbying at national level.

Elena Perotti


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2017-06-22 15:41

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