State Administration of Radio, Film and Television Decree
The Foreign Satellite Television Channel Landing Management Rules were passed at the Administration Meeting of 15 June 2005, are hereby promulgated, and take effect on 1 August 2004.
Director: Xu Guangchun
18 June 2004
Foreign Satellite Television Channel Landing Management Rules
Article 1: In order to strengthen management over the landing within the Chinese borders of foreign television channels broadcast through satellite methods (hereafter simply named foreign satellite television channels), these Rules are formulated.
Article 2: The State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (hereafter simply named SARFT) is responsible for implementing specialized management over the landing of foreign satellite television channels, and to implement an examination and approval system for the landing of foreign satellite television channels.
Article 3: With SARFT approval, foreign satellite television channels may land within three-star or higher foreign-oriented hotels and guesthouses, foreign-oriented compounds specially provided for the business or residence of foreign persons and other designated scopes.
Article 4: Foreign satellite television channels applying for landing shall meet the following conditions:
(1) the broadcast content may not violate the provisions of Chinese laws, regulations and rules;
(2) being a lawful television medium in the own country (region);
(3) having the comprehensive strength to cooperate with Chinese radio and television in a mutually beneficial manner, committing to and vigorously assisting the landing of Chinese radio and television programmes abroad;
(4) channels applying for landing and their directly related organs to be friendly to China, having long-lasting and friendly radio and television exchange and cooperation with China;
(5) agreeing to transmit their programmes through SARFT-appointed organs (hereafter simply named appointed organs) and uniform orientations, committing not to land within Chinese borders through other channels;
(6) agreeing to and entrusting appointed organs with sole agency for all matters related to landing within Chinese borders.
Article 5: SARFT annually examines and approves foreign satellite television channel landing applications once, the period of validity is one year every time, this is generally handled from July to September every year.
Article 6: A foreign radio and television organ will, in principle, have only one subordinate satellite television channel that is approved to land within provided scopes; in principle, no news-type foreign satellite television channels are approved to land within the borders; foreign satellite television channels that are set up or cooperatively run by domestic radio and television organs and other relevant departments, groups, enterprises or individuals are not approved to land within the borders. Under special circumstances, reports must be made to SARFT for special approval.
Article 7: Applications for foreign satellite television channel landing are to be put forward to SARFT by appointed organs.
Before appointed organs file applications, they shall conduct an assessment of wither the foreign satellite television channel that they intend to represent meets the conditions provided in Article 4, the technological conditions for representation, etc., or not, and report the relevant work situation to SARFT. SARFT puts forward an opinion on whether or not it agrees with the arrangements for matters related to landing of the appointed organ and the foreign satellite television channel, where the arrangements are not agreed with, SARFT does not accept the application concerned from the appointed organ.
Article 8: Appointed organs applying for foreign satellite television channel landing shall submit:
(1) a “Satellite Television Channel Memorandum of Understanding” written by the foreign satellite television channel concerned;
(2) certification documents provided by the foreign satellite television channel concerned that it meets the conditions provided in Article 4 and Article 6 of these Rules as well as decoders and other reception devices. Relevant materials shall be written in Chinese, where they are written in other languages, a Chinese translation must be appended, and the Chinese translation shall be taken as authoritative.
(3) the assessment report of the appointed organ;
(4) the cooperation agreement signed by the appointed organ and the foreign satellite television channel.
Article 9: SARFT shall make a decision on whether or not to approve the landing of foreign satellite television channels meeting the conditions provided in Article 4 and Article 6 of these Rules within the time limits provided by administrative licensing law .
Article 10: Foreign satellite television channels approved for landing must abide by all Chinese regulations concerning foreign satellite television channel management.
Article 11: Foreign satellite television channels approved for landing shall adjust the original satellite signal broadcasting coverage scope, method, etc., according to the requirements of the appointed organ; and implement the agreement with the appointed organ; they may not launch unauthorized promotional activities for their television channels, their brand or related reception equipment within the borders of China.
Article 12: Foreign satellite television channels approved for landing are prohibited to broadcast programmes with the following content:
(1) content harming the national unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of China;
(2) content harming China’s national security, damaging China’s honour and interests, or exposing China’s state secrets;
(3) inciting separation of the Chinese nation, ethnic hatred or ethnic discrimination, destroying China’s ethnic unity, or harming China’s ethnic customs and habits;
(4) content harming China’s social stability, propagating obscenity, violence, superstition, heresy or abetting crime;
(5) content slandering or insulting others, or harming others’ lawful rights and interests;
(6) content harming China’s social morals or slandering the excellent cultural traditions of the Chinese nation;
(7) other content violating the provisions of Chinese laws, regulations and rules.
Article 13: Where changes occur in the following matters of foreign satellite television channels that are approved for landing, they must notify and consult with the appointed organ in advance, and the appointed organ is to report this to SARFT:
(1) changes in the shareholding structure, operational powers, investors and main management personnel of the channel and directly related organs;
(2) changes in the channel’s name, channel category, programme composition, broadcast language, subtitling and other important matters listed in the “Satellite Television Channel Memorandum of Understanding”;
(3) changes in whether or not the channel’s broadcast signal is encoded, the signal transmission satellite and its geographical coverage, and other relevant technical parameters;
(4) changes in matters involving content provided in Article 4 and Article 6 of these Rules.
Where SARFT believes that channels that had been approved for landing do not conform to the provisions of these Rules due to the abovementioned changes, it may act correspondingly, up to cessation of landing qualifications.
Article 14: All levels’ administrative radio and television departments manage reception activities concerning foreign satellite television channels according to the “Satellite Television and Radio Terrestrial Reception Equipment Management Regulations” (State Council Decree No. 129) and related regulations.
Article 15: Appointed organs shall adopt necessary measures and assist administrative radio and television departments in conducting supervision over the relevant acts and broadcast content of the foreign satellite television channels they represent, coordinate with SARFT implementing corresponding processes, and timely report problems they discover.
Where foreign satellite television channels approved for landing violate the provisions of Article 12 of these Rules, appointed organs shall timely cease the transmission of the content violating regulations.
Article 16: Where foreign satellite television channels approved for landing violate the provisions of these Rules, and circumstances are relatively light, SARFT issues a warning, and they are required to declare the situation and correct matters; where circumstances are grave, dissemination of specially designated content is provisionally ceased, or the landing qualifications of the relevant channel are provisionally suspended or cancelled.
Article 17: Where foreign satellite television channels approved for landing create harmful influence, apart from being subject to corresponding punishment, they shall eliminate the harmful influence in the corresponding broadcasting scope according to SARFT requirements.
Article 18: Foreign television channels that are approved by SARFT to land in specially designated regions within the borders, are to be managed with reference to these Rules.
Article 19: These Rules take effect on 1 August 2004. The SARFT “Foreign Satellite Television Channel Landing Management Rules” (SARFT Decree No. 22) are abolished at the same time.