European Convention on Transfrontier Television

European Treaty Series – No. 132

European Convention on Transfrontier Television *
Strasbourg, 5.V.1989

 

Preamble
The member States of the Council of Europe and the other States party to the European
Cultural Convention, signatory hereto,
Considering that the aim of the Council of Europe is to achieve a greater unity between its
members, for the purpose of safeguarding and realising the ideals and principles which are
their common heritage;
Considering that the dignity and equal worth of every human being constitute fundamental
elements of those principles;
Considering that the freedom of expression and information, as embodied in Article 10 of the
Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, constitutes one
of the essential principles of a democratic society and one of the basic conditions for its
progress and for the development of every human being;
Reaffirming their commitment to the principles of the free flow of information and ideas and
the independence of broadcasters, which constitute an indispensable basis for their
broadcasting policy;
Affirming the importance of broadcasting for the development of culture and the free formation
of opinions in conditions safeguarding pluralism and equality of opportunity among all
democratic groups and political parties;
Convinced that the continued development of information and communication technology
should serve to further the right, regardless of frontiers, to express, to seek, to receive and to
impart information and ideas whatever their source;
Being desirous to present an increasing range of choice of programme services for the public,
thereby enhancing Europe’s heritage and developing its audiovisual creation, and being
determined to achieve this cultural objective through efforts to increase the production and
circulation of high-quality programmes, thereby responding to the public’s expectations in the
political, educational and cultural fields;
Recognising the need to consolidate the common broad framework of regulation;
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(*) Text amended according to the provisions of the Protocol (ETS No. 171) which entered into force, on
1 March 2002.
The Treaty of Lisbon amending the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty establishing the European
Community entered into force on 1 December 2009. As a consequence, as from that date, any
reference to the European Economic Community shall be read as the European Union.
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Bearing in mind Resolution No. 2 and the Declaration of the 1st European Ministerial
Conference on Mass Media Policy;
Being desirous to develop the principles embodied in the existing Council of Europe
Recommendations on principles on television advertising, on equality between women and
men in the media, on the use of satellite capacity for television and sound radio, and on the
promotion of audiovisual production in Europe,
Have agreed as follows:
CHAPTER I – GENERAL PROVISIONS
Article 1 – Object and purpose
This Convention is concerned with programme services embodied in transmissions. The
purpose is to facilitate, among the Parties, the transfrontier transmission and the
retransmission of television programme services.
Article 2 – Terms employed (1)
For the purposes of this Convention:
a “Transmission” means the initial emission by terrestrial transmitter, by cable, or by
satellite of whatever nature, in encoded or unencoded form, of television programme
services for reception by the general public. It does not include communication services
operating on individual demand;
b “Retransmission” signifies the fact of receiving and simultaneously transmitting,
irrespective of the technical means employed, complete and unchanged television
programme services, or important parts of such services, transmitted by broadcasters for
reception by the general public;
c “Broadcaster” means the natural or legal person who has editorial responsibility for the
composition of television programme services for reception by the general public and
transmits them or has them transmitted, complete and unchanged, by a third party;
d “Programme service” means all the items within a single service provided by a given
broadcaster within the meaning of the preceding paragraph;
e “European audiovisual works” means creative works, the production or co-production of
which is controlled by European natural or legal persons;
f “Advertising” means any public announcement in return for payment or similar
consideration or for self-promotional purposes, which is intended to promote the sale,
purchase or rental of a product or service, to advance a cause or idea, or to bring about
some other effect desired by the advertiser or the broadcaster itself;
g “Tele-shopping” means direct offers broadcast to the public with a view to the supply of
goods or services, including immovable property, rights and obligations in return for
payment;
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h “Sponsorship” means the participation of a natural or legal person, who is not engaged in
broadcasting activities or in the production of audiovisual works, in the direct or indirect
financing of a programme with a view to promoting the name, trademark, images or
activities of that person.
Article 3 – Field of application
This Convention shall apply to any programme service transmitted or retransmitted by entities
or by technical means within the jurisdiction of a Party, whether by cable, terrestrial
transmitter or satellite, and which can be received, directly or indirectly, in one or more other
Parties.
Article 4 – Freedom of reception and retransmission
The Parties shall ensure freedom of expression and information in accordance with Article 10
of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms and they
shall guarantee freedom of reception and shall not restrict the retransmission on their
territories of programme services which comply with the terms of this Convention.
Article 5 – Duties of the transmitting Parties (1)
1 Each transmitting Party shall ensure that all programme services transmitted by broadcasters
within its jurisdiction comply with the terms of this Convention.
2 For the purposes of this Convention, a broadcaster within the jurisdiction of a Party is:
– a broadcaster who is deemed to be established in that Party according to paragraph 3;
– a broadcaster to whom paragraph 4 applies.
3 For the purpose of this Convention, a broadcaster shall be deemed to be established in a
Party, hereinafter referred to as “transmitting Party” in the following cases:
a the broadcaster has its head office in that Party and the decisions on programme
schedules are taken in that Party;
b if a broadcaster has its head office in one Party but decisions on programme schedules
are taken in another Party, it shall be deemed to be established in the Party where a
significant part of the workforce involved in the pursuit of the television broadcasting
activity operates; if a significant part of the workforce involved in the pursuit of the
television broadcasting activity operates in each of those Parties, the broadcaster shall
be deemed to be established in the Party where it has its head office; if a significant part
of the workforce involved in the pursuit of the television broadcasting activity operates in
neither of those Parties, the broadcaster shall be deemed to be established in the Party
where it first began broadcasting in accordance with the system of law of that Party,
provided that it maintains a stable and effective link with the economy of that Party;
c if a broadcaster has its head office in a Party but decisions on programme schedules are
taken in a State which is not Party to this Convention, or vice-versa, it shall be deemed to
be established in the Party concerned, provided that a significant part of the workforce
involved in the pursuit of the television broadcasting activity operates in that Party;
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d if, when applying the criteria of paragraph 3 of Article 2 of Directive 97/36/EC of the
European Parliament and of the Council of 19 June 1997 amending Council Directive
89/552/EEC on the co-ordination of certain provisions laid down by law, regulation or
administrative action in member States concerning the pursuit of television broadcasting
activities, a broadcaster is deemed to be established in a member State of the European
Community, that broadcaster shall also be deemed to be established in that State for the
purposes of this Convention.
4 A broadcaster to whom the provisions of paragraph 3 are not applicable is deemed to be
within the jurisdiction of a Party, so-called transmitting Party, in the following cases:
a it uses a frequency granted by that Party;
b although it does not use a frequency granted by a Party it does use a satellite capacity
appertaining to that Party;
c although it uses neither a frequency granted by a Party nor a satellite capacity
appertaining to a Party it does use a satellite up-link situated in that Party.
5 If the transmitting Party cannot be determined according to paragraph 4, the Standing
Committee shall consider this issue according to Article 21, paragraph 1a, of this Convention,
in order to determine this Party.
6 This Convention shall not apply to television broadcasts intended exclusively for reception in
States which are not Party to this Convention, and which are not received directly or indirectly
by the public in one or more Parties.
Article 6 – Provision of information
1 The responsibilities of the broadcaster shall be clearly and adequately specified in the
authorisation issued by, or contract concluded with, the competent authority of each Party, or
by any other legal measure.
2 Information about the broadcaster shall be made available, upon request, by the competent
authority of transmitting Party. Such information shall include, as a minimum, the name or
denomination, seat and status of the broadcaster, the name of the legal representative, the
composition of the capital, the nature, purpose and mode of financing of the programme
service the broadcaster is providing or intends providing.
CHAPTER II – PROGRAMMING MATTERS
Article 7 – Responsibilities of the broadcaster
1 All items of programme services, as concerns their presentation and content, shall respect the
dignity of the human being and the fundamental rights of others.
In particular, they shall not:
a be indecent and in particular contain pornography;
b give undue prominence to violence or be likely to incite to racial hatred.
2 All items of programme services which are likely to impair the physical, mental or moral
development of children and adolescents shall not be scheduled when, because of the time of
transmission and reception, they are likely to watch them.
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3 The broadcaster shall ensure that news fairly presents facts and events and encourages the
free formation of opinions.
Article 8 – Right of reply (1)
1 Each transmitting Party shall ensure that every natural or legal person, regardless of
nationality or place of residence, shall have the opportunity to exercise a right of reply or to
seek other comparable legal or administrative remedies relating to programmes transmitted
by a broadcaster within its jurisdiction, within the meaning of Article 5. In particular, it shall
ensure that timing and other arrangements for the exercise of the right of reply are such that
this right can be effectively exercised. The effective exercise of this right or other comparable
legal or administrative remedies shall be ensured both as regards the timing and the
modalities.
2 For this purpose, the name of the programme service or of the broadcaster responsible for
this programme service shall be identified in the programme service itself, at regular intervals
by appropriate means.
Article 9 – Access of the public to information (1)
Each Party shall examine and, where necessary, take legal measures such as introducing the
right to short reporting on events of high interest for the public to avoid the right of the public
to information being undermined due to the exercise by a broadcaster within its jurisdiction of
exclusive rights for the transmission or retransmission, within the meaning of Article 3, of such
an event.
Article 9bis – Access of the public to events of major importance (2)
1 Each Party retains the right to take measures to ensure that a broadcaster within its
jurisdiction does not broadcast on an exclusive basis events which are regarded by that Party
as being of major importance for society in such a way as to deprive a substantial proportion
of the public in that Party of the possibility of following such events by live coverage or
deferred coverage on free television. If it does so, the Party concerned may have recourse to
the drafting of a list of designated events which it considers to be of major importance for
society.
2 Parties shall ensure by appropriate means, respecting the legal guarantees granted by the
Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms as well as, where
appropriate, the national constitution, that a broadcaster within their jurisdiction does not
exercise the exclusive rights purchased by that broadcaster following the date of entry into
force of the Protocol amending the European Convention on Transfrontier Television in such
a way that a substantial proportion of the public in another Party is deprived of the possibility
of following events which are designated by that other Party, via whole or partial live coverage
or where necessary or appropriate for objective reasons in the public interest, whole or partial
deferred coverage on free television as determined by that other Party under paragraph 1,
respecting the following requirements:
a the Party implementing the legal measures referred to in paragraph 1 shall draw up a list
of national or non-national events which are considered by that Party as being of major
importance for society;
b the Party shall do so in a clear and transparent manner in due and effective time;
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c the Party shall determine whether these events shall be available via whole or partial live
coverage, or where necessary or appropriate for objective reasons in the public interest,
whole or partial deferred coverage;
d the measures taken by the Party drawing up the list shall be proportionate and as
detailed as necessary to enable other Parties to take measures referred to in this
paragraph;
e the Party drawing up the list shall notify the list and the corresponding legal measures to
the Standing Committee, the time limit for which shall be fixed by the Standing
Committee;
f the measures taken by the Party drawing up the list shall be within the limitations of the
guidelines of the Standing Committee referred to in paragraph 3 and the Standing
Committee must have given a positive opinion on the measures.
Measures based on this paragraph shall apply only to those events published by the Standing
Committee in the annual list referred to in paragraph 3 and to those exclusive rights
purchased after the entry into force of the amending Protocol.
3 Once a year the Standing Committee shall:
a publish a consolidated list of the enlisted events and corresponding legal measures
notified by Parties in accordance with paragraph 2e;
b draw up guidelines to be adopted by a majority of three quarters of the members in
addition to the requirements listed up in paragraph 2a to e in order to avoid differences
between the implementation of this article and that of corresponding European
Community provisions.
Article 10 – Cultural objectives (1)
1 Each transmitting Party shall ensure, where practicable and by appropriate means, that a
broadcaster within its jurisdiction reserves for European works a majority proportion of its
transmission time, excluding the time appointed to news, sports events, games, advertising,
teletext services and tele-shopping. This proportion, having regard to the broadcaster’s
informational, educational, cultural and entertainment responsibilities to its viewing public,
should be achieved progressively, on the basis of suitable criteria.
2 In case of disagreement between a receiving Party and a transmitting Party on the application
of the preceding paragraph, recourse may be had, at the request of one of the Parties, to the
Standing Committee with a view to its formulating an advisory opinion on the subject. Such a
disagreement shall not be submitted to the arbitration procedure provided for in Article 26.
3 The Parties undertake to look together for the most appropriate instruments and procedures
to support, without discrimination between broadcasters, the activity and development of
European production, particularly in countries with a low audiovisual production capacity or
restricted language area.
4 The Parties shall ensure that a broadcaster within their jurisdiction does not broadcast
cinematographic works outside periods agreed with the rights holders.
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Article 10bis – Media pluralism (1)
The Parties, in the spirit of co-operation and mutual assistance which underlies this
Convention, shall endeavour to avoid that programme services transmitted or retransmitted by
a broadcaster or any other legal or natural persons within their jurisdiction, within the meaning
of Article 3, endanger media pluralism.
CHAPTER III – ADVERTISING AND TELE-SHOPPING (2)
Article 11 – General standards (3)
1 Advertising and tele-shopping shall be fair and honest.
2 Advertising and tele-shopping shall not be misleading and shall not prejudice the interests of
consumers.
3 Advertising and tele-shopping addressed to or using children shall avoid anything likely to
harm their interests and shall have regard to their special susceptibilities.
4 Tele-shopping shall not exort minors to contract for the sale or rental of goods and services.
5 The advertiser shall not exercise any editorial influence over the content of programmes.
Article 12 – Duration (3)
1 The proportion of tele-shopping spots, advertising spots and other forms of advertising, with
the exception of tele-shopping windows within the meaning of paragraph 3, shall not exceed
20% of the daily transmission time. The transmission time for advertising spots shall not
exceed 15% of the daily transmission time.
2 The proportion of advertising spots and tele-shopping spots within a given clock hour shall not
exceed 20%.
3 Windows devoted to tele-shopping programmes broadcast within programme services which
are not exclusively devoted to tele-shopping shall be of a minimum uninterrupted duration of
15 minutes. The maximum number of windows per day shall be eight. Their overall duration
shall not exceed three hours per day. They must be clearly identified by optical and acoustic
means.
4 For the purposes of this article, advertising shall not include:
– announcements made by the broadcaster in connection with its own programmes and
ancillary products directly derived from those programmes;
– announcements in the public interest and charity appeals broadcast free of charge.
Article 13 – Form and presentation (3)
1 Advertising and tele-shopping shall be clearly distinguishable as such and recognisably
separate from the other items of the programme service by optical and/or acoustic means. In
principle, advertising and tele-shopping spots shall be transmitted in blocks.
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(2) Heading amended according to the provisions of the Protocol (ETS No. 171).
(3) Text amended according to the provisions of the Protocol (ETS No. 171).
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2 Advertising and tele-shopping shall not use subliminal techniques.
3 Surreptitious advertising and tele-shopping shall not be allowed, in particular the presentation
of products or services in programmes when it serves advertising purposes.
4 Advertising and tele-shopping shall not feature, visually or orally, persons regularly presenting
news and current affairs programmes.
Article 14 – Insertion of advertising and tele-shopping (1)
1 Advertising and tele-shopping shall be inserted between programmes. Provided the
conditions contained in paragraphs 2 to 5 of this article are fulfilled, advertising and teleshopping
spots may also be inserted during programmes in such a way that the integrity and
value of the programme and the rights of the rights holders are not prejudiced.
2 In programmes consisting of autonomous parts, or in sports programmes and similarly
structured events and performances comprising intervals, advertising and tele-shopping spots
shall only be inserted between the parts or in the intervals.
3 The transmission of audiovisual works such as feature films and films made for television
(excluding series, serials, light entertainment programmes and documentaries), provided their
scheduled duration is more than forty-five minutes, may be interrupted once for each
complete period of fourty-five minutes. A further interruption is allowed if their scheduled
duration is at least twenty minutes longer than two or more complete periods of fourty-five
minutes.
4 Where programmes, other than those covered by paragraph 2, are interrupted by advertising
or tele-shopping spots, a period of at least twenty minutes should elapse between each
successive advertising or tele-shopping break within the programme.
5 Advertising and tele-shopping shall not be inserted in any broadcast of a religious service.
News and current affairs programmes, documentaries, religious programmes, and children’s
programmes, when their scheduled duration is less than thirty minutes, shall not be
interrupted by advertising or tele-shopping. If their scheduled duration is thirty minutes or
longer, the provisions of the previous paragraphs shall apply.
Article 15 – Advertising and tele-shopping of particular products (2), (1)
1 Advertising and tele-shopping for tobacco products shall not be allowed.
2 Advertising and tele-shopping for alcoholic beverages of all varieties shall comply with the
following rules:
a they shall not be addressed particularly to minors and no one associated with the
consumption of alcoholic beverage in advertising or tele-shopping should seem to be a
minor;
b they shall not link the consumption of alcohol to physical performance or driving;
c they shall not claim that alcohol has therapeutic qualities or that it is a stimulant, a
sedative or a means of resolving personal problems;
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(2) Heading amended according to the provisions of the Protocol (ETS No. 171).
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d they shall not encourage immoderate consumption of alcohol or present abstinence or
moderation in a negative light;
e they shall not place undue emphasis on the alcoholic content of beverages.
3 Advertising for medicines and medical treatment which are only available on medical
prescription in the transmitting Party shall not be allowed.
4 Advertising for all other medicines and medical treatment shall be clearly distinguishable as
such, honest, truthful and subject to verification and shall comply with the requirement of
protection of the individual from harm.
5 Tele-shopping for medicines and medical treatment shall not be allowed.
Article 16 – Advertising and tele-shopping directed specifically at a single Party (1)
1 In order to avoid distortions in competition and endangering the television system of a Party,
advertising and tele-shopping which are specifically and with some frequency directed to
audiences in a single Party other than the transmitting Party shall not circumvent the
television advertising and tele-shopping rules in that particular Party.
2 The provisions of the preceding paragraph shall not apply where:
a the rules concerned establish a discrimination between advertising and tele-shopping
transmitted by a broadcaster within the jurisdiction of that Party and advertising and teleshopping
transmitted by a broadcaster or any other legal or natural person within the
jurisdiction of another Party, or
b the Parties concerned have concluded bilateral or multilateral agreements in this area.
CHAPTER IV – SPONSORSHIP
Article 17 – General standards
1 When a programme or series of programmes is sponsored in whole or in part, it shall clearly
be identified as such by appropriate credits at the beginning and/or end of the programme.
2 The content and scheduling of sponsored programmes may in no circumstances be
influenced by the sponsor in such a way as to affect the responsibility and editorial
independence of the broadcaster in respect of programmes.
3 Sponsored programmes shall not encourage the sale, purchase or rental of the products or
services of the sponsor or a third party, in particular by making special promotional references
to those products or services in such programmes.
Article 18 – Prohibited sponsorship (1)
1 Programmes may not be sponsored by natural or legal persons whose principal activity is the
manufacture or sale of products, or the provision of services, the advertising and teleshopping
of which are prohibited by virtue of Article 15.
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2 Companies whose activity includes, inter alia, the manufacture or sale of medicines and
medical treatments may sponsor programmes by promoting the name, trademark, image or
activities of the company, to the exclusion of any reference to medicines or specific medical
treatment available only on medical prescription in the transmitting Party.
3 Sponsorship of news and current affairs programmes shall not be allowed.
CHAPTER IVbis – PROGRAMME SERVICES DEVOTED EXCLUSIVELY TO SELFPROMOTION
OR TELE-SHOPPING (1)
Article 18bis – Programme services devoted exclusively to self-promotion
1 The provisions of this Convention shall apply mutatis mutandis to programme services
devoted exclusively to self-promotion.
2 Other forms of advertising shall be allowed on such services within the limits established by
Article 12, paragraphes 1 and 2.
Article 18ter: Programme services devoted exclusively to tele-shopping
1 The provisions of this Convention shall apply mutatis mutandis to programme services
devoted exclusively to tele-shopping.
2 Advertising shall be allowed on such services within the limits established in Article 12,
paragraph 1. Article 12, paragraph 2, shall not apply.
CHAPTER V – MUTUAL ASSISTANCE
Article 19 – Co-operation between the Parties
1 The Parties undertake to render each other mutual assistance in order to implement this
Convention.
2 For that purpose:
a each Contracting State shall designate one or more authorities, the name and address of
each of which it shall communicate to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe at
the time of deposit of its instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession;
b each Contracting State which has designated more than one authority shall specify in its
communication under sub-paragraph a. the competence of each authority.
3 An authority designated by a Party shall:
a furnish the information foreseen under Article 6, paragraph 2, of this Convention;
b furnish information at the request of an authority designated by another Party on the
domestic law and practices in the fields covered by this Convention;
c co-operate with the authorities designated by the other Parties whenever useful, and
notably where this would enhance the effectiveness of measures taken in
implementation of this Convention;
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d consider any difficulty arising from the application of this Convention which is brought to
its attention by an authority designated by another Party.
CHAPTER VI – STANDING COMMITTEE
Article 20 – Standing Committee (1)
1 For the purposes of this Convention, a Standing Committee shall be set up.
2 Each Party may be represented on the Standing Committee by one or more delegates. Each
delegation shall have one vote. Within the areas of its competence, the European Community
shall exercise its right to vote with a number of votes equal to the number of its member
States which are Parties to this Convention; the European Community shall not exercise its
right to vote in cases where the member States concerned exercise theirs, and conversely.
3 Any State referred to in Article 29, paragraph 1, which is not a Party to this Convention may
be represented on the Standing Committee by an observer.
4 The Standing Committee may seek the advice of experts in order to discharge its functions. It
may, on its own initiative or at the request of the body concerned, invite any international or
national, governmental or non-governmental body technically qualified in the fields covered by
this Convention to be represented by an observer at one or part of one of its meetings.
5 The Standing Committee shall be convened by the Secretary General of the Council of
Europe. Its first meeting shall be held within six months of the date of entry into force of the
Convention. It shall subsequently meet whenever one-third of the Parties or the Committee of
Ministers of the Council of Europe so requests, or on the initiative of the Secretary General of
the Council of Europe in accordance with the provisions of Article 23, paragraph 2, or at the
request of one or more Parties in accordance with the provisions of Articles 21, subparagraph
c, and 25, paragraph 2.
6 A majority of the Parties shall constitute a quorum for holding a meeting of the Standing
Committee.
7 Subject to the provisions of Article 9bis, paragraph 3b, and Article 23, paragraph 3, the
decisions of the Standing Committee shall be taken by a majority of three-quarters of the
members present.
8 Subject to the provisions of this Convention, the Standing Committee shall draw up its own
Rules of Procedure.
Article 21 – Functions of the Standing Committee (1)
1 The Standing Committee shall be responsible for following the application of this Convention.
It may:
a make recommendations to the Parties concerning the application of the Convention;
b suggest any necessary modifications of the Convention and examine those proposed in
accordance with the provisions of Article 23;
c examine, at the request of one or more Parties, questions concerning the interpretation
of the Convention;
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d use its best endeavours to secure a friendly settlement of any difficulty referred to it in
accordance with the provisions of Article 25;
e make recommendations to the Committee of Ministers concerning States other than
those referred to in Article 29, paragraph 1, to be invited to accede to this Convention.
f give opinions on abuse of rights under Article 24bis, paragraph 2c.
2 In addition, the Standing Committee shall:
a draw up the guidelines referred to in Article 9bis, paragraph 3b, in order to avoid
differences between the implementation of the rules of this Convention concerning
access of the public to events of major importance for society and that of corresponding
European Community provisions;
b give an opinion on the measures taken by Parties which have drawn up a list of national
or non-national events which are considered by those Parties as being of major
importance for society in accordance with Article 9bis, paragraph 2;
c publish once a year a consolidated list of the enlisted events and corresponding
measures notified by Parties in accordance with Article 9bis, paragraph 2e.
Article 22 – Reports of the Standing Committee
After each meeting, the Standing Committee shall forward to the Parties and the Committee
of Ministers of the Council of Europe a report on its discussions and any decisions taken.
CHAPTER VII – AMENDMENTS
Article 23 – Amendments (1)
1 Any Party may propose amendments to this Convention.
2 Any proposal for amendment shall be notified to the Secretary General of the Council of
Europe who shall communicate it to the member States of the Council of Europe, to the other
States party to the European Cultural Convention, to the European Community and to any
non-member State which has acceded to, or has been invited to accede to this Convention in
accordance with the provisions of Article 30. The Secretary General of the Council of Europe
shall convene a meeting of the Standing Committee at the earliest two months following the
communication of the proposal.
3 The Standing Committee shall examine any amendment proposed and shall submit the text
adopted by a majority of three-quarters of the members of the Standing Committee to the
Committee of Ministers for approval. After its approval, the text shall be forwarded to the
Parties for acceptance.
4 Any amendment shall enter into force on the thirtieth day after all the Parties have informed
the Secretary General of their acceptance thereof.
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5 However, the Committee of Ministers may, after consulting the Standing Committee, decide
that a particular amendment shall enter into force following the expiry of a period of two years
after the date on which it has been opened to acceptance, unless a Party has notified the
Secretary General of the Council of Europe of an objection to its entry into force. Should such
an objection be notified, the amendment shall enter into force on the first day of the month
following the date on which the Party to the Convention which has notified the objection has
deposited its instrument of acceptance with the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
6 If an amendment has been approved by the Committee of Ministers, but has not yet entered
into force in accordance with paragraphs 4 or 5, a State or the European Community may not
express their consent to be bound by the Convention without accepting at the same time the
amendment.
CHAPTER VIII – ALLEGED VIOLATIONS OF THIS CONVENTION
Article 24 – Alleged violations of this Convention
1 When a Party finds a violation of this Convention, it shall communicate to the transmitting
Party the alleged violation and the two Parties shall endeavour to overcome the difficulty on
the basis of the provisions of Articles 19, 25 and 26.
2 If the alleged violation is of a manifest, serious and grave nature which raises important public
issues and concerns Articles 7, paragraphs 1 or 2, 12, 13, paragraph 1, first sentence, 14
or 15, paragraphs 1 or 3, and if it persists within two weeks following the communication, the
receiving Party may suspend provisionally the retransmission of the incriminated programme
service.
3 In all other cases of alleged violation, with the exception of those provided for in paragraph 4,
the receiving Party may suspend provisionally the retransmission of the incriminated
programme service eight months following the communication, if the alleged violation persists.
4 The provisional suspension of retransmission shall not be allowed in the case of alleged
violations of Articles 7, paragraph 3, 8, 9 or 10.
Article 24bis – Alleged abuses of rights conferred by this Convention (1)
1 When the programme service of a broadcaster is wholly or principally directed at the territory
of a Party other than that which has jurisdiction over the broadcaster (the “receiving Party”),
and the broadcaster has established itself with a view to evading the laws in the areas
covered by the Convention which would have applied to it had it fallen within the jurisdiction of
that other Party, this shall constitute an abuse of rights.
2 Where such an abuse is alleged by a Party, the following procedure shall apply:
a the Parties concerned shall endeavour to achieve a friendly settlement;
b if they fail to do so within three months, the receiving Party shall refer the matter to the
Standing Committee;
c having heard the views of the Parties concerned, the Standing Committee shall, within
six months of the date on which the matter was referred to it, give an opinion on whether
an abuse of rights has been committed and shall inform the Parties concerned
accordingly.
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3 If the Standing Committee has concluded that an abuse of rights has occurred, the Party
whose jurisdiction the broadcaster is deemed to be within shall take appropriate measures to
remedy the abuse of rights and shall inform the Standing Committee of those measures.
4 If the Party whose jurisdiction the broadcaster is deemed to be within has failed to take the
measures specified in paragraph 3 within six months, the arbitration procedure set out in
Article 26, paragraph 2, and the appendix of the Convention shall be pursued by the Parties
concerned.
5 A receiving Party shall not take any measures against the programme service concerned until
the arbitration procedure has been completed.
6 Any measures proposed or taken under this article shall comply with Article 10 of the
Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.
CHAPTER IX – SETTLEMENT OF DISPUTES
Article 25 – Conciliation
1 In case of difficulty arising from the application of this Convention, the parties concerned shall
endeavour to achieve a friendly settlement.
2 Unless one of the parties concerned objects, the Standing Committee may examine the
question, by placing itself at the disposal of the parties concerned in order to reach a
satisfactory solution as rapidly as possible and, where appropriate, to formulate an advisory
opinion on the subject.
3 Each party concerned undertakes to accord the Standing Committee without delay all
information and facilities necessary for the discharge of its functions under the preceding
paragraph.
Article 26 – Arbitration
1 If the parties concerned cannot settle the dispute in accordance with the provisions of
Article 25, they may, by common agreement, submit it to arbitration, the procedure of which is
provided for in the appendix to this Convention. In the absence of such an agreement within
six months following the first request to open the procedure of conciliation, the dispute may be
submitted to arbitration at the request of one of the parties.
2 Any Party may, at any time, declare that it recognises as compulsory, ipso facto and without
special agreement in respect of any other Party accepting the same obligation, the application
of the arbitration procedure provided for in the appendix to this Convention.
CHAPTER X – OTHER INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS AND THE INTERNAL LAW OF THE
PARTIES
Article 27 – Other international agreements or arrangements (1)
1 In their mutual relations, Parties which are members of the European Community shall apply
Community rules and shall not therefore apply the rules arising from this Convention except in
so far as there is no Community rule governing the particular subject concerned.
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2 Nothing in this Convention shall prevent the Parties from concluding international agreements
completing or developing its provisions or extending their field of application.
3 In the case of bilateral agreements, this Convention shall not alter the rights and obligations of
Parties which arise from such agreements and which do not affect the enjoyment of other
Parties of their rights or the performance of their obligations under this Convention.
Article 28 – Relations between the Convention and the internal law of the Parties (1)
Nothing in this Convention shall prevent the Parties from applying stricter or more detailed
rules than those provided for in this Convention to programme services transmitted by a
broadcaster deemed to be within their jurisdiction, within the meaning of Article 5.
CHAPTER XI – FINAL PROVISIONS
Article 29 – Signature and entry into force (1)
1 This Convention shall be open for signature by the member States of the Council of Europe
and the other States party to the European Cultural Convention, and by the European
Community. It is subject to ratification, acceptance or approval. Instruments of ratification,
acceptance or approval shall be deposited with the Secretary General of the Council of
Europe.
2 This Convention shall enter into force on the first day of the month following the expiration of a
period of three months after the date on which seven States, of which at least five member
States of the Council of Europe, have expressed their consent to be bound by the Convention
in accordance with the provisions of the preceding paragraph.
3 A State may, at the time of signature or at any later date prior to the entry into force of this
Convention in respect of that State, declare that it shall apply the Convention provisionally.
4 In respect of any State referred to in paragraph 1, or the European Community, which
subsequently express their consent to be bound by it, this Convention shall enter into force on
the first day of the month following the expiration of a period of three months after the date of
deposit of the instrument of ratification, acceptance or approval.
Article 30 – Accession by non-member States
1 After the entry into force of this Convention, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of
Europe, after consulting the Contracting States may invite any other State to accede to this
Convention by a decision taken by the majority provided for in Article 20d. of the Statute of the
Council of Europe and by the unanimous vote of the representatives of the Contracting States
entitled to sit on the Committee.
2 In respect of any acceding State, this Convention shall enter into force on the first day of the
month following the expiration of a period of three months after the date of deposit of the
instrument of accession with the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
Article 31 – Territorial application
1 Any State may, at the time of signature or when depositing its instrument of ratification,
acceptance, approval or accession, specify the territory or territories to which this Convention
shall apply.
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2 Any State may, at any later date, by a declaration addressed to the Secretary General of the
Council of Europe, extend the application of this Convention to any other territory specified in
the declaration. In respect of such territory, the Convention shall enter into force on the first
day of the month following the expiration of a period of three months after the date of receipt
of such declaration by the Secretary General.
3 Any declaration made under the two preceding paragraphs may, in respect of any territory
specified in such declaration, be withdrawn by a notification addressed to the Secretary
General. The withdrawal shall become effective on the first day of the month following the
expiration of a period of six months after the date of receipt of such notification by the
Secretary General.
Article 32 – Reservations (1)
1 At the time of signature or when depositing its instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval
or accession any State may declare that it reserves the right of restrict the retransmission on
its territory, solely to the extent that it does not comply with its domestic legislation, of
programme services containing advertising for alcoholic beverages according to the rules
provided for in Article 15, paragraph 2, of this Convention.
No other reservation may be made.
2 A reservation made in accordance with the preceding paragraph may not be the subject of an
objection
3 Any Contracting State which has made a reservation under paragraph 1 may wholly or partly
withdraw it by means of a notification addressed to the Secretary General of the Council of
Europe. The withdrawal shall take effect on the date of receipt of such notification by the
Secretary General.
4 A Party which has made a reservation under paragraph 1 may not claim the application of that
provision by any other Party; it may, however, if its reservation is partial or conditional, claim
the application of that provision in so far as it has itself accepted it.
Article 33 – Denunciation
1 Any Party may, at any time, denounce this Convention by means of a notification addressed
to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
2 Such denunciation shall become effective on the first day of the month following the expiration
of a period of six months after the date of receipt of the notification by the Secretary General.
Article 34 – Notifications (1)
The Secretary General of the Council of Europe shall notify the member States of the Council
of Europe, the other States party to the European Cultural Convention, the European
Community and any State which has acceded to, or has been invited to accede to this
Convention of:
a any signature;
b the deposit of any instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession;
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c any date of entry into force of this Convention in accordance with the provisions of
Articles 29, 30 and 31;
d any report established in accordance with the provisions of Article 22;
e any other act, declaration, notification or communication relating to this Convention.
In witness whereof the undersigned, being duly authorised thereto, have signed this
Convention.
Done at Strasbourg, the 5th day of May 1989, in English and French, both texts being equally
authentic, in a single copy which shall be deposited in the archives of the Council of Europe.
The Secretary General of the Council of Europe shall transmit certified copies to each
member State of the Council of Europe, to the other States party to the European Cultural
Convention, to the European Community and to any State invited to accede to this
Convention. (1)
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