April 14, 2006 10 years 10 months ago

New carriage fees would come from consumer: Shaw

CALGARY - "It's not our problem that if someone's in TV and then they buy newspapers so now they don't make any money," said Shaw Communications CEO Jim Shaw, responding to a question on the potential for retransmission fees being paid to Canadian broadcasters by MSOs.

During a conference call with financial analysts Thursday presenting the company's second quarter financials, Shaw said he thought any CRTC TV policy review would have a light impact on cable and if any new fees arise, they would just be passed on through to cable customers anyway.

CanWest Global CEO Leonard Asper has gone on record numerous times saying he wants broadcasters to be paid for their signals. His company – while not specifically mentioned by Shaw, was once just a broadcaster but is also now the country's largest newspaper publisher.

"I don't think at the end of the day it will have much to do with cable," he said. "If there are any costs that we did have to bear, it would be totally passed on to consumers. I don't know if that would be great for politicians to have happen but that certainly will happen. So I don't think there's any risk on the cable side from a TV review.

"I would hope the TV review will allow a broader range of stations that could come in from the U.S. or Europe or anywhere. You can get them on the Internet so why can't the cable company carry them?"

- Greg O'Brien