Television operators are slowly converting to digital terrestrial in Nepal. Now the government has decided that foreign channels should have clean feed. This means they can’t have advertisement. It is challenging paradigm shift in television but it can improve Nepal’s ad business. The deadline for shifting to digital TV was Biasakh 15 and last date for clean feed is Shrawan 1.
The conversion from analogue to digital didn’t happen in time. It is still going on because there are lots of operators. The conversion is going to take lots of money as well. Now Clean Feed is whole different game. Digital conversion helps government collect more tax and Clean feed is going to aid Nepali ad industry.
In Television Clean Feed, foreign channels can’t show ads. If the foreign companies need to target viewer in Nepal, they have to shows Nepali ads in Nepali channel. This is told to double the Nepali ad industry benefit of Rs 6 Billion.
There are lots of challenges in both projects. Currently there is no dedicated clean feed of international channel for Nepal. If the program goes active, Nepali viewers will get few English channels only. None of the Indian channels have ad-free service for Nepal.
People won’t be able to view any Indian and International channels if the challenges are not mitigated. Indian channels are one of the most watched channel among foreign channels. They need to create special feed by the advertisement they show here. Currently it is impossible to make such drastic things all of a sudden.
As for now Government is going to implement this policy in stages because there is not enough manpower. Next problem is Indian channels said they can’t develop special feed only for Nepal. Cable operators in Nepal also threatened to shut down serving of all channels if the policy is implemented without any planning.
Affects and Changes
After implementation of this policy, all multinational companies will have to show ads in Nepali channel. Dubbed ads will be blocked totally. This means Nepali ad industry is going to make profit. There are lots of challenges in the TV industry. We are currently seeing a lot of new policy without any good planning, strategy and collaboration with all concerned parties.
First the operators are going to digital TV. Next is serving clean feed service to viewers. The operators are saying that, it is not possible at this time. International TV channels should also be ready with us. We are in wait and watch situation here. This can be successful if foreign channels also serve special feed.