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Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on June 15, 2007

NEW DELHI: Ministries and departments of the Union government are no longer obliged to advertise only on Prasar Bharati channels if they want to advertise on private channels and sufficient weightage has to be given to regional channels, according to the new Audio-Visual Advertisement Policy.Faced with a situation where the number of advertisements released by the government during 2006-07 actually fell over the previous year, information and broadcasting minister Priyaranjan Dasmunsi has said that the policies for Empanelment of Audio-Video Producers and Electronic Media channels have been reviewed to remove any bottlenecks and ensure greater reach.

The minister told the Consultative Committee of Members of Parliament attached to his ministry that a comprehensive review of policies related to the Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity – the nodal agency for the purpose – has been carried out to facilitate the media being catered to.

DAVP sources told that broad distribution of advertisements in monetary terms was set at 70 per cent for national channels and 30 per cent for regional channels. Provision has been made for review of rates if TAM rate varies by more than 50 per cent continuously for six months period.

The Directorate will no longer take any departmental charge, as in the case of print media ads. The Empanelment Advisory Committee constitution has changed and is headed by the Cost Advisor in the finance ministry, as in the case of the rate structure committee for Press Advertisements.

Although advertisements amounting to Rs 3.07 billion were released by the government during 2006-07 (around Rs 1 billion to the audio-visual medium), the number of advertisements released both to the print and the audio-visual media came down over the previous year.

According to figures released by the ministry, the DAVP released a total of 150,965 advertisements during the year, of which 130,787 went to the audio-visual media.

The number of advertisements released in 2005-06 was 156,850 (133,471 to the audio-visual media) and 115,137 in 2004-05 (92,903 to the audio-visual media). However, the expenditure has gone up from around Rs 1.67 billion in 2004-05 to just over Rs 2.91 billion a year later.

Dasmunsi also announced that the policies relating to two other wings of the ministry – the Publications Division and the Registrar of Newspapers in India – have also been reviewed to make the systems more transparent and user friendly.

He said DAVP’s new Advertisement Policy for print media has come out with measures to raise the share of small and medium newspapers in the advertising revenue routed through DAVP.

MPs who took part in the meeting felt more focus and support was needed for the medium and small newspapers. It was suggested that a deadline may be fixed for release of advertisements by DAVP so that the newspapers in different parts of the country can carry the ads and do not miss out. Some of the members also complained about blockage of funds at the level of the client ministries who had to release these to DAVP for eventual release to the newspapers.

Meanwhile, DAVP sources said the ministry had been informed that newspapers which have refused to publish advertisements of public service advertisements, as required in clause 18 (f) of the Advertisement Policy had still not replied to notices sent by the Directorate. The newspapers stopped publishing the advertisements following a directive from the Indian Newspaper Society (INS) to member newspapers not to publish advertisements of PSUs and Autonomous Bodies at DAVP rates.

(15 June 2007 3:04 pm – Source:’s Media, Advertising, Marketing Watch | Team )

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