A key issue mentioned but not resolved in the Social Communication Council (CCS) working group?s report on cable TV delivered Tuesday, August 26, relates to BNDES participation in projects to promote universal access to pay television. BNDES is the national development bank.
Many pay-TV industry executives complain about the difficulty of obtaining BNDES financing for cable networks, especially smaller ones that can?t provide substantial loan guarantees. BNDES currently supports only the larger MSOs, such as Net Serviços, Acom, Horizon and TV Cidade, through loans or investment in equity.
PAY-TV News has learned that the CCS working group?s report limits itself to relaying what it was told by BNDES: only a strategic decision by the Government can make more subsidized loans available to the cable TV industry. Otherwise loans and investments must comply with the usual rules, which include collateral or other guarantees. Few people believe the Government will agree to find some special reason for defining pay TV as strategic. Even if it did and BNDES began subsidizing credit to the industry, this would involve at most a reduction in interest rates for specific facilities because the bank can?t legally waive the need to provide guarantees among other tough requirements.