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Scottish role in future of BBC

Memorandum of Understanding guarantees Scottish Government will be consulted.

The Scottish Government’s role in the future of the BBC will be guaranteed in a Memorandum of Understanding between it, the UK Government, Scottish Parliament and the BBC.

The agreement follows interventions from Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop to ensure the Scottish Government is consulted in the whole process of charter renewal.

The MoU has been agreed by Scottish and UK Ministers and is expected to be considered and voted on by the Scottish Parliament next week.

The agreement includes a commitment that the UK Government will consult with the Scottish Government throughout the process of the BBC’s Charter Renewal, which will begin in the next few months.

There is also a commitment that the BBC will appear before Scottish Parliament Committees on matters relating to Scotland and will send its annual report and accounts to the Scottish Government, who will lay these before the Scottish Parliament. These commitments are to be enshrined in the next BBC Charter.

The MoU puts into practice the Smith Commission Agreement on the BBC.

The BBC’s Royal Charter sets out how the organisation is run and is due to be renewed during 2016.

Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop said:

"The Memorandum of Understanding sets out a role for the Scottish Government in the future of the BBC and ensures that the BBC will be held accountable to the Scottish people through their representatives in the Scottish Parliament.

"This commitment that the Scottish Government will be consulted on BBC Charter Renewal means we can in turn consult the Scottish people and develop a national conversation about how the BBC can best serve the people of Scotland.

"Thanks to Scottish Government negotiations, we will not be consulted just at the beginning and end of charter renewal – but will be a part of the whole process, helping to ensure the BBC meets Scotland’s needs.

"The agreement the Scottish Government has reached with the UK Government on this issue will implement the Smith Commission recommendations in this area."

Notes To Editors

Recommendations on the BBC were set out in Paragraph 36 of the Smith Commission Agreement.


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