Local and regional newspapers are to receive more support for their important information mandate. This is the aim of a revision of the law on which the responsible Committee for Transport and Telecommunications of the National Council (KVF-N) opened the consultation process yesterday. The publishers' associations Schweizer Medien, Medias Suisses and Stampa Svizzera welcome the KVF-N's proposal to moderately expand the proven indirect press subsidy. Regional newspapers could thus be strengthened in their important function in a targeted manner.
"Streaks of light on the horizon"
"This revision of the law is a ray of light on the horizon for local and regional newspapers in Switzerland," emphasized Andrea Masüger, President of the Swiss Media Publishers Association. "At a time when it is becoming increasingly difficult to finance quality journalism, regional reporting and information provision must be ensured with special measures." The fact is that the income of private Swiss media companies has been falling drastically for years, while costs are rising. This means that there is less money available for journalism, especially in the regions. The future of many small newspapers is at stake, as is their role as a critical mouthpiece for democracy.
According to the planned revision, the so-called indirect press subsidy for newspapers and magazines is to be increased by CHF 15 million per year during a transitional phase of seven years. In addition, delivery via early delivery is to be supported with a new contribution of CHF 30 million. Only local and regional newspapers with circulations of up to 40,000 copies are to benefit from this. The delivery allowance for membership and foundation press is also to be increased by CHF 10 million per year for the same period.