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Commercial broadcasters take action to raise awareness about the 2009 elections

Date

13 May 2009

Sections

InfoSociety

Brussels, 13 May 2009 – In the light of the forthcoming 6th European Parliament’s elections, commercial broadcasters from all over Europe take action by broadcasting a large-scale awareness raising campaign. The campaign entitled “European Elections – It’s your Choice”, will run until and during the EP elections, which will take place in the 27 Member States between 4 and 7 June 2009.

Anne-Margrete Wachtmeister, Head of Audiovisual Unit of the European Parliament, commented: “The EP welcomes the engagement of commercial broadcasters in these elections.

This strong cooperation will bring EU citizens to vote and to realise their role in making their voice heard. Having a European campaign broadcast all across Europe is a great experience and shows well the support of commercial broadcasters in delivering a broader debate about Europe and engage people to take part in society and to vote.”

Since thirty years, the EP elections have been the largest European democratic exercise, with 375 million citizens called on this year to elect 736 Members of the European
Parliament. In Poland, France, Luxembourg, Bulgaria, Italy, and Germany - to name only a few countries - commercial broadcasters recognise their crucial role as mass media reaching out to millions of citizens and agreed on broadcasting free of charge the TV spots produced
by the EP as well as informing their viewers with special reports on EU issues adapted to national markets.

The TV spots, designed to be adapted to national specific circumstances, deal with important issues such as energy, security, transport and food safety that matter to all European citizens. With this trans-national campaign, the EP aims at raising awareness about the forthcoming elections and gives every single citizen the chance to be actively part of the EU.

Ross Biggam, Director General of the Association of Commercial Television in Europe (ACT), said: “Many commercial broadcasters are actively encouraging citizens to vote. A number of our member companies have agreed to air the European Parliament advertisement, while many others are engaged in national initiatives to encourage
participation at the European and other elections. In line with the various news channels and programmes run by our members, we have always demonstrated our engagement in the
democratic political process and our objective of providing European citizens with a reliable source of information.”

About the ACT:

The Association of Commercial Television in Europe (ACT) is a trade association representing the interests of the commercial broadcasting sector in Europe. The ACT has twenty eight member companies active in 34 European countries operating more than 400 free-to-air and pay-tv channels and distributing several hundred channels and new services.

For further information, please see: www.acte.be

Press contact:
Ross Biggam Utta Tuttlies
Director General Head of Communications
Phone: +32-2-738 76 13 Phone: +32-2-738 76 18
GSM: +32-477-407 733 GSM: +32-495 – 24 64 67
E-mail: rb@acte.be E-mail: ut@acte.be

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