Hong Kong Television Network’s (HKTV) application for a free-to-air television license has been returned to the Communications Authority after the Executive Council requested additional information from HKTV for the application to be processed.
The decision was made eight months after the Communications Authority submitted HKTV’s application to the Council.
The Communications Authority said HKTV should know what additional information they were required to submit, but so far it is unclear when HKTV can submit the necessary information, according to Apple Daily.
Ricky Wong Wai-kay, chairman of HKTV, said on Commercial Radio on Wednesday that he “can not see what additional information they can possibly be looking for.” He said that “all necessary information should have been submitted through the dozens if not hundreds of document exchanges with the Communications Authority.”
Wong said that he thought this was an excuse to delay the application process. “Leung Chun-ying does not want the licensing controversy to affect his re-election as Chief Executive,” he added.
Executive Council member and New People Party chair Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee said on the same programme that the Executive Council discussed HKTV’s license multiple times. “There were no political considerations when it comes to licensing,” Ip said. “Decisions were made according to the law and broadcasting policies.”
HKTV first submitted an application for a free-to-air license in 2009. But the Chief Executive decided in October 2013 not to grant their application due to “a basket of factors” while granting licenses to two other applications. A second application was submitted by HKTV in April 2014.