Business Irish

Friday 23 June 2017

Paying TV licence fee through utility bills not uncommon

In Greece, the TV licence fee is obligatory and also paid through electricity bills. Stock Image
In Greece, the TV licence fee is obligatory and also paid through electricity bills. Stock Image
Paul Melia

Paul Melia

The suggestion from RTÉ director general Dee Forbes that TV licence fees be paid through utility bills isn't a new concept.

Italy and Greece are among a number of countries that impose the charge on electricity bills, with Italy introducing the new rules just last year.

The Stability Law allows for the fee to be paid in 10 instalments. The annual cost is €100, and users must pay the licence fee if they own one or more televisions.

A report last month said that evasion rates had fallen from 30pc to 4pc since the new system was introduced, yielding additional revenue of €500m over the year to the Italian national broadcaster. An estimated 21 million households paid.

In Greece, the licence fee is obligatory and also paid through electricity bills. It costs €51.60 a year. Ms Forbes said evasion rates in Ireland were among the highest in Europe, at around 19pc. She suggested that linking the fee with electricity bills could improve collection rates.

Irish Independent

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