English is not an official language of the Swiss Confederation. This translation is provided for information purposes only and has no legal force.
Ordinance on Radio and Television
of 9 March 2007 (Status as of 1 July 2016)
The Swiss Federal Council,
based on the Federal Act of 24 March 20061 on Radio and Television (RTVA),
(Art. 1 para. 2 RTVA)
1 Programming of minor editorial importance is programming which can be received by fewer than 1,000 devices simultaneously in a quality corresponding to the state of the art.
2 Programming of minor editorial importance is also programming which:
- is restricted to editorially unprocessed, free or charged-for reproduction of the following data in particular:
- indications of the time and environmental measurement data,
- still or moving weather and meteorological data,
- emergency numbers,
- references to services or events of the public administration,
- public transport timetables; and
- which otherwise contains neither advertising nor sponsorship with the exception of advertising for own products and services.
(Art. 3 let. a RTVA)
- the name of the programme service and the main features of the programme service content;
- the name of the person responsible for editorial matters ;
- the domicile or registered office of the broadcaster;
- details which enable the public to establish quick and uncomplicated contact with the broadcaster, in particular the e-mail address and the web address;
- the nature and area of the technical broadcasting;
- the identity as well as the share of capital or voting rights of shareholders and other co-owners possessing at least one third of the capital or voting rights, as well as their holdings of at least one third in other undertakings in the media sector;
- the identity of board of directors and management members;
- the broadcaster's holdings in other undertakings of at least one third of the capital or voting rights, as well as holdings of these undertakings of at least one third in other undertakings in the media sector;
- programme-related cooperation with third parties;
- the number of employees.
- the date of recording of the broadcast programme service.
2 For the broadcasting of a programme service of a duration of 30 days at most, the obligation to notify is limited to the details in terms of paragraph 1 letters a-e.
3 OFCOM may publish the notified information.
1 Term in accordance with No I of the Ordinance of 12 March 2010, in force since 1 Apr. 2010 (AS 2010 965). This amendment has been made throughout the text.
2 Inserted by No I of the Ordinance of 15 June 2012, in force since 1 Aug. 2012 (AS 2012 3667).
3 Term in accordance with No I of the Ordinance of 12 March 2010, in force since 1 Apr. 2010 (AS 2010 965). This amendment has been made throughout the text.
(Art. 3 let. a RTVA)
Broadcasters subject to the obligation to notify must designate a correspondence address in Switzerland to which communications, writs and official decisions among other things may be delivered with legal force.
(Art. 5 RTVA)
1 Broadcasters of freely-receivable television programme services must acoustically announce programmes which are unsuitable for young people or identify them as such by visual means throughout their entire period of transmission.
2 Broadcasters of subscription television must enable their subscribers by means of appropriate technical precautions to prevent access by minors to content which is unsuitable for young people.
(Art. 7 para. 1 RTVA)
1 Broadcasters of national and regional-language television programme services shall as far as practicable and with appropriate resources ensure that:
- at least 50 per cent of the relevant broadcasting time is reserved for Swiss or other European works;
- in their programme services at least 10 per cent of the relevant broadcasting time or at least 10 per cent of programme costs are reserved for Swiss or other European works made by independent producers. Appropriate space shall be reserved for works which are not older than five years.
2 The relevant broadcasting time referred to in para. 1 does not include the time appointed to news, sports events, games, advertising and teletext services.
3 In their annual report to OFCOM, broadcasters shall report on the extent to which these quotas have been achieved or progress has been made compared with the previous year, the reasons why this is not the case and the measures taken or envisaged to achieve these quotas or to make progress.
4 If the information or the measures taken are not adequate to achieve the required quotas, the supervisory authority shall take measures in accordance with Article 89 para. 1 RTVA.
(Art. 7 para. 2 RTVA)
1 The obligation to promote Swiss films and films co-produced in Switzerland and other countries applies to all regional-language and national television broadcasters which meet the following criteria:
- they broadcast feature films, documentary films or animation films in their Swiss programme services or foreign syndicated programme services.
- their annual operating expenditure exceeds CHF 1 million.
- they do not transmit any programme service with low broadcasting activity.2
2 The broadcasters referred to in paragraph 1 shall report on their film promotion activities in their annual report. The Federal Office of Communications, in consultation with the Federal Office of Culture, decides on the amount of any support fee. All expenditure incurred in the reporting year for the purchase, production or co-production of Swiss films, documentaries or animated films will be allowable.
(Art. 7 para. 3 and 24 para. 3 RTVA)
1 The Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SRG SSR) is obliged gradually to increase the proportion of subtitled television programmes in its editorial programme service to one third of the total broadcasting time in each linguistic region. This obligation also applies to television broadcasters which broadcast their programme service in accordance with Article 25 para. 4 RTVA in cooperation with SRG SSR.
2 SRG SSR must broadcast every day in each official language at least one information programme in sign language.
4 The range of content to be subtitled and the scope of the other services to be provided by SRG SSR, as well as the schedule for implementation, are fixed in an agreement between SRG SSR and the disabled persons associations concerned. If no agreement is reached within six months of the commencement of the RTVA or if the agreement is repealed, DETEC shall fix the services to be provided by SRG SSR.
5 Every three years at least, OFCOM shall examine the possibility of increasing the proportion of television programmes adapted for the disabled. If the regulations in force no longer appear to be appropriate, DETEC shall request the Federal Council to amend them.
(Art. 7 para. 3 and 4 RTVA)1
1 Television broadcasters with a national or regional-language programme service which do not broadcast their programme service in cooperation with SRG SSR must provide the visually impaired or hard of hearing with at least one weekly programme adapted for the disabled, during prime time.
2 OFCOM exempts broadcasters from the obligation relating to editing to ensure disabled access if their annual operating expenditure is less than CHF 1 million, if their programme service is not suitable for disabled-access editing or if they transmit a programme service with low broadcasting activity.2
3 Licensed regional television broadcasters must provide subtitles for their main information programme, at the latest from its first and in subsequent repeats. In the case of broadcasters that have main information programmes in two languages, the foregoing applies to both languages.3
4 OFCOM shall fix the maximum amount of the payment for each broadcaster in advance based on the available resources and the anticipated level of the chargeable costs of fulfilling the obligation under paragraph 3. The definitive calculation is made as soon as the broadcaster submits its final account.4
1 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 25 May 2016, in force since 1 July 2016 (AS 2016 2151).
2 Inserted by No I of the Ordinance of 12 March 2010 (AS 2010 965). Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 5 Nov. 2014, in force since 1 Jan. 2015 (AS 2014 3849)
3 Inserted by No I of the Ordinance of 25 May 2016, in force since 1 July 2016 (AS 2016 2151).
4 Inserted by No I of the Ordinance of 25 May 2016, in force since 1 July 2016 (AS 2016 2151).
(Art. 8 para. 1-3 RTVA)
1 SRG SSR and all broadcasters with a licence based on Article 38 paragraph 1 letter a or 43 paragraph 1 letter a RTVA must broadcast the following information:
- urgent police announcements;
- the following announcements in terms of the Alarm Ordinance of 18 August 20102 (AlarmO):
- official alarms and related instructions on conduct, as well as the all-clear announcements and the relaxation or lifting of instructions on conduct,
- warnings issued by the authorities of natural dangers and earthquake reports of levels 4 and 5 as well as related all-clear announcements,
- announcements correcting false alarms,
- warnings relating to siren tests.
2 The broadcasts are made on the order:
- of the competent cantonal authority in the case of events which the cantons are responsible for dealing with;
- the competent federal authorities, and in particular the Federal Chancellery and the National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC), in the case of events which the Confederation is responsible for dealing with;
- the specialist federal agencies responsible for warnings and earthquake reports in accordance with the AlarmO in the case of natural dangers.
3 The authority issuing the order under paragraph 1 shall ensure that broadcasters and telecommunications service providers are informed in full and in good time.
4 The broadcast is made:
- in the coverage area that could be affected by the danger;
- free of charge and with information on the source;
- immediately; in the case of warnings issued by the authorities of natural dangers and earthquake reports they shall be made at the first opportunity or as quickly as possible; in the case of siren tests, they shall be made on several occasions before the test is carried out;
- in principle without modification; storm warnings may be edited provided the essential content remains the same.
5 DETEC shall regulate the details of the broadcasts.
(Art. 8 para. 4 RTVA)
1 If direct access to the Confederation's official sources of information is no longer possible to the same extent for all broadcasters in a crisis situation because of technical circumstances or limited space, the first radio programme services of the SRG SSR shall take precedence.
2 The Federal Chancellery shall guarantee that non-accredited broadcasters will be able to access the SRG SSR's corresponding electronic raw material immediately and free of charge.
(Art. 10 para. 3 and Art. 2 let. k and o RTVA)
1 The following do not qualify as advertising:
- references to the programme service in which they are broadcast;
- references to programmes in other programme services by the same undertaking with no advertising character;
- references to ancillary products broadcast free of charge which are directly related in terms of content to the programme service in which they are broadcast;
- brief appeals for donations to non-profit organisations where any payment or similar consideration given to the broadcaster covers no more than the production costs.
2 Surreptitious advertising is the representation, of an advertising nature, of goods, services or ideas in editorial programmes, in particular if it is done in return for payment.
3 The coproduction of a programme by natural or legal persons who are engaged in the radio or television sector or in the production of audio-visual works is not considered to be sponsorship of a programme.
(Art. 9 RTVA)
1 Advertising must be separated from editorial programmes by a special acoustic or optical identification signal. In television, the term "advertising" in the relevant national language must be used when this is done.
1bis If an advertising spot up to 10 seconds in length is broadcast on television separately in accordance with Article 18 paragraph 1, a discrimination signal may be dispensed with if the advertising spot is made continuously and clearly identifiable by the display of the term "Advertisement" in the relevant national language on the screen.1
2 Self-contained advertising transmissions on television which last longer than 60 seconds must be clearly and recognisably identified throughout by the display of the term "Advertisement" in the relevant national language on the screen.2
3 Self-contained advertisements on the radio which are not clearly identifiable as such shall not last longer than 60 seconds.
4 In the advertising of local or regional radio broadcasters whose coverage area contains fewer than 150,000 inhabitants of 15 years of age and above, editorial employees may participate provided they do not present news or current affairs programmes. The same applies to local or regional television broadcasters whose coverage area contains fewer than 250,000 inhabitants who are 15 years of age or over.
(Art. 9 para. 1 and 11 para. 1 RTVA)
1 Advertising may be inserted in part of the screen during editorial programmes if:
- the area used for advertising constitutes a unit bordering the edge of the screen, does not visually split the editorial content and does not cover more than one third of the screen area;
- the advertising is separated by clearly visible borders and a different visual design from the editorial programme and is continuously identified by the clearly legible caption "Advertising" in the relevant national language;
- the advertising is restricted to a visual representation.
2 Split-screen advertising is not permitted in news or current affairs programmes, children's programmes or during the broadcasting of religious services.
3 Split-screen advertising is counted towards the advertising time as defined in Article 19.
(Art. 9 para. 1 RTVA)
1 If the viewer has the possibility of switching from the programme to an interactive advertising environment by activating an on-screen button, the following conditions must be met:
- after activation, the viewer must be informed that he or she is leaving the television programme and entering a commercial environment.
- after the information according to letter a, the viewer must confirm entry into the commercial environment.
- the screen immediately following the confirmation must not contain advertising for products or services for which advertising is banned in accordance with Article 10 paragraphs 1 and 2 RTVA.
2 If the button which leads to the interactive advertising environment is inserted into the editorial part of the programme, the provisions of Article 13 apply to the inserted button.
(Art. 9 para. 1 RTVA)
1 Virtual advertising is the modification of the transmitted signal to replace advertising areas at the site of the recording by others.
2 Virtual advertising is permitted under the following conditions:
- the advertising surface to be replaced is associated with a public event organised by a third party.
- it replaces an existing immobile advertising surface at the site of the recording which was erected by third parties especially for this event.
- the advertising visible on-screen may use moving images only if the replaced advertising surface already contained moving images.
- at the start and end of the programme concerned, reference must be made to the fact that the programme contains virtual advertising.
3 Virtual advertising is not permitted in news or current affairs programmes, children's programmes or during the broadcasting of religious services.
4 Articles 9 and 11 RTVA are not applicable.
(Art. 10 para. 1 let. b and c RTVA)
1 Advertising for alcoholic beverages must comply with the following rules:
- advertising for alcoholic beverages must not be addressed specifically to minors.
- no-one associated with the consumption of alcoholic beverages should appear to be a minor.
- the consumption of alcoholic beverages may not be linked to physical performance or driving vehicles.
- it must not be claimed that alcohol has therapeutic qualities or that it is a stimulant, a sedative or a means of solving personal problems.
- advertising for alcoholic beverages must not encourage immoderate consumption of alcohol or present abstinence or moderation in a negative light.
- the alcohol content of beverages must not be stressed.
2 No advertising for alcoholic beverages may be broadcast before, during or after programmes which are aimed at children or young people.
3 Offers for the sale of alcoholic beverages are not permitted.
4 In programmes which are subject to a ban on advertising for alcoholic beverages, advertising for an alcohol-free product must not generate any advertising effect for beverages which contain alcohol. In particular, the scenario, references to the product and the manufacturer, design elements, backgrounds and persons must differ from those which are used in commercial communication for alcoholic beverages from the same manufacturer. The advertised product must be available on the market.
(Art. 10 para. 1 let. d RTVA)
1 Any group which takes part in popular elections is considered to be a political party.
2 Political offices are offices to which persons are appointed by popular elections.
3 The prohibition on advertising relating to matters that are the subject of a popular vote applies from the moment of publication of the date of the vote by the competent authority.
(Art. 11 para. 1 RTVA)
1 Advertising spots may be transmitted individually between programmes and during the transmission of sporting events.
2 The following transmissions may be interrupted by advertising once for each programmed period of at least 30 minutes:
- cinema feature films;
- television films, with the exception of series, serials and documentary films;
- news programmes and programmes relating to current political events.
3 Programmes for children and religious services programmes must not be interrupted by advertising.
4 No restrictions apply to any other programmes, in particular series, serials and documentary films.
5 In the case of the transmission of events which include breaks, in addition to paragraph 2 the insertion of advertising during the breaks is permitted.
6 For programmes which consist of independent parts, the insertion of advertising is permitted only between these parts.
7 For non-licensed radio programme services and for non-licensed television programme services which cannot be received abroad, no restrictions apply to the insertion of advertising with the exception of the restriction mentioned in paragraph 3.
(Art. 11 para. 2 RTVA)
2 For non-licensed radio programme services and for non-licensed television programme services which cannot be received abroad, no restrictions apply to the duration of advertising.
(Art. 12 para. 2 and 3, and 13 para. 4 RTVA)
1 Sponsored programmes must be identified as such. In particular, the sponsor's name, company logo or another symbol, products and services may be used for this purpose.
2 Each mention of the sponsor must establish a clear relationship between the sponsor and the programme.
3 The mention of the sponsor must not directly encourage the conclusion of transactions relating to goods or services, in particular by means of sales promotion information relating to these goods or services.
4 During the transmission of a television programme, the sponsorship relationship may be briefly mentioned again (insert). One insert per sponsor is permitted every ten minutes of transmission time. Inserts are not permitted in children's programmes.
(Art. 9 para. 1, 12 para. 3 and 13 para. 4 RTVA)
1 Goods and services which a sponsor makes available may be integrated into the programme (product placement). Product placement is subject to the provisions relating to sponsorship unless this Article provides otherwise.
2 Product placement is not permitted in children's programmes, documentary films and religious broadcasts, unless the sponsor merely provides goods or services of low value free of charge, in particular as production aids or prizes, and does not provide any additional remuneration.
3 Clear reference must be made to product placement at the start and end of the broadcast and after each advertising break. A single reference suffices for product placements, production aids and prizes of a low value of up to CHF 5000.
4 The following cinema feature films, television films and documentary films are exempted from the identification obligation according to paragraph 3:
- those not produced or commissioned by the broadcaster itself or by a company controlled by the broadcaster;
- those commissioned by the broadcaster from independent film producers and co-financed by the broadcaster below the level of 40 percent (co-productions).
(Art. 14 para. 1 and 3 RTVA)
1 In SRG SSR's television programme services, the following programmes may be interrupted by advertising:
- news and current affairs programmes: once for each programmed period of at least 90 minutes;
- other programmes:
- between 18:00 and 23:00: once for each programmed period of at least 90 minutes,
- at other periods of the day: once for each programmed period of at least 30 minutes.1
2 In SRG SSR's television programme services:
- advertising spots and longer forms of advertising may together amount to a maximum of 15 per cent of the daily transmission time;
- between 18:00 and 23:00, advertising spots and longer forms of advertising may together amount to a maximum of 12 minutes within one full clock hour.
- at other periods of the day, advertising spots may amount to a maximum of 12 minutes within one full clock hour.
3 Split-screen advertising and virtual advertising are not permitted except during the broadcasting of sports events.
4 The transmission of sales programmes is not permitted.
5 In its radio programme services, SRG SSR may broadcast self-advertising in so far as this serves predominantly to build audience loyalty.
6 References to events for which SRG SSR has entered into a media partnership may be broadcast as self-advertising if they serve predominantly to build audience loyalty and the media partnership was not concluded for the purpose of financing the programme service. A media partnership exists when cooperation exists between the broadcaster and the organiser of a public event and the broadcaster undertakes to refer to the event in the programme service and is compensated with advantages at the location and similar services.
1 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 13 Oct. 2010, in force since 1 Jan. 2011 (AS 2010 5219).
2 Inserted by No I of the Ordinance of 13 Oct. 2010, in force since 1 Jan. 2011 (AS 2010 5219).
3 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 13 Oct. 2010, in force since 1 Jan. 2011 (AS 2010 5219).
4 Inserted by No I of the Ordinance of 12 March 2010, in force since 1 Apr. 2010 (AS 2010 965).
(Art. 14 para. 3 RTVA)
In the other journalistic services of SRG SSR that are required in addition to radio and television programme services to fulfil the programme service mandate and which are financed from radio and television fees (Art. 25 para. 3 let. b RTVA), advertising and sponsorship are not permitted, with the following exceptions:1
- sponsored programmes transmitted in the programme service which are also available on demand must be provided with the corresponding mention of the sponsor;
- programmes that are available on demand and which include split-screen advertising or virtual advertising may be provided unmodified;
- advertising and sponsorship are permitted in the teletext service. The advertising and sponsorship provisions of the RTVA and this Ordinance which apply to SRG SSR's programme services are applicable, mutatis mutandis; details are set out in the licence;
- in the licence, other exceptions may be specified for programming which arise in cooperation with non-profit-making third parties, as well as with reference to self-advertising.
(Art. 16 RTVA)
1 Any transfer of share capital, registered capital, cooperative capital, or the voting rights of a licensed broadcaster of at least 5 per cent or for a non-licensed broadcaster at least one third is subject to the obligation to notify.
2 Moreover, any transfer as a result of which economic control of the broadcaster changes is subject to the obligation to notify.
3 Notification must take place within one month.
(Art. 16 RTVA)
1 Participation in a different enterprise is subject to the obligation to notify if a licensed broadcaster owns at least 20 per cent, or in the case of a non-licensed broadcaster at least one third, of the share capital, registered capital, cooperative capital, or the voting rights of an enterprise.
2 All changes in the holdings which are subject to the obligation to notify in accordance with para. 1 must also be notified.
3 Notification must take place within one month.
(Art. 17 para. 2 let. a RTVA)
The obligation to provide information in accordance with Article 17 paragraph 2 letter a RTVA also applies to legal and natural persons who are active in the radio and television market or in a related market, and
- at least 20 per cent of their share capital, registered capital, cooperative capital or the voting rights is owned by a licensed broadcaster or at least one third of their share capital, registered capital, cooperative capital or the voting rights is owned by non-licenced broadcaster; or
- who own at least 20 per cent of the share capital, registered capital, cooperative capital or the voting rights of a licensed broadcaster or at least one third of a non-licensed broadcaster.
(Art. 18 RTVA)
2 In particular, the annual report of a licensed broadcaster must include the following details:
- the name and place of residence or domicile of the broadcaster;
- the identity of board of directors and management members;
- the identity as well as the share of capital or voting rights of shareholders and other co-owners possessing at least 5 per cent of the capital or voting rights of the broadcaster, as well as their holdings of at least 20 per cent in other undertakings in the media sector;
- the broadcaster's holdings in other undertakings of at least 20 per cent of the capital or voting rights, as well as holdings of these undertakings of at least 20 per cent in other undertakings in the media sector;
- the fulfilment of the requirements in Article 7 RTVA and of the legal and licensing obligations and conditions, in particular the fulfilment of the performance mandate;
- the programme service content;
- the number of employees;
- the training and professional development of programme producers;
- the technical means and the area of broadcasting;
- the total expenditure as well as partial expenditure in the areas of personnel, programming, broadcasting and administration;
- total revenue as well as partial revenues in the areas of advertising and sponsorship.
3 The annual report of a non-licensed broadcaster must include the following details in particular:
- the details in paragraph 2 letters a, b and f, g, and i;
- the identity as well as the share of capital or voting rights of shareholders and other co-owners possessing at least one third of the capital or voting rights of the broadcaster, as well as their holdings of at least one third in other undertakings in the media sector;
- the broadcaster's holdings in other undertakings of at least one third of the capital or voting rights, as well as holdings of these undertakings of at least one third in other undertakings in the media sector;
- the fulfilment of the requirements in Article 7 RTVA and of the legal obligations and conditions.
- the total expenditure and total revenue
4 OFCOM may publish the information from the annual reports which are explicitly mentioned in paras. 2 and 3.
5 All licensed broadcasters must submit annual accounts comprising a profit and loss account, balance sheet and annex, as well as the auditor's report. DETEC may issue regulations on accounting and on separate accounting in accordance with Article 41 paragraph 2 RTVA.7
7 The annual report and annual accounts must be submitted to OFCOM by the end of April of the following year.
1 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 5 Nov. 2014, in force since 1 Jan. 2015 (AS 2014 3849).
2 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 5 Nov. 2014, in force since 1 Jan. 2015 (AS 2014 3849).
3 Repealed by No I of the Ordinance of 5 Nov. 2014, with effect from 1 Jan. 2015 (AS 2014 3849).
4 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 5 Nov. 2014, in force since 1 Jan. 2015 (AS 2014 3849).
5 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 5 Nov. 2014, in force since 1 Jan. 2015 (AS 2014 3849).
6 Inserted by No I of the Ordinance of 5 Nov. 2014, in force since 1 Jan. 2015 (AS 2014 3849).
7 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 15 June 2012, in force since 1 Aug. 2012 (AS 2012 3667).
8 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 15 June 2012, in force since 1 Aug. 2012 (AS 2012 3667).
(Art. 20 RTVA)
1 Broadcasters with a music programme service without advertising and sponsorship are exempt from the recording obligation, if the programme service does not contain any spoken information. It must be possible to reconstruct the programme service by means of playlists.
2 Broadcasters under paragraph 1 are obliged to provide the titles of the music broadcast at the request of the supervisory authority.
3 The recording and retention period for contributions forming part of the other journalistic services from SRG SSR amounts to:
- for programmes broadcast in the programme service that are kept ready for replay: four months from being broadcast in the programme service;
- for contribution in the same election or vote dossier (Art. 92 para. 4 RTVA): four months from the date of publication but no longer than two months following the date of the election or vote;
- for other contributions produced by the editorial staff: two months from the date of publication.1
(Art. 19 RTVA)
OFCOM shall ensure the collection and processing of data and the other statistical work that is necessary to produce the statistics in accordance with Article 19 paragraph 1 RTVA (broadcasting statistics). It coordinates the work in application of the Ordinance of 30 June 19931 on the Organisation of Federal Statistics with the Federal Statistical Office and cooperates with the latter.
(Art. 19 RTVA)
1 For the production of the broadcasting statistics, OFCOM uses the data obtained in implementation of the radio and television legislation, in particular the information related to the obligation to notify and in the annual reports in accordance with Article 27 paragraphs 2 and 3.
2 OFCOM may:
- collect any other data necessary for the broadcasting statistics from broadcasters of Swiss programme services;
- use the data from other authorities and organisations obtained in the application of federal law.
3 Broadcasters shall provide OFCOM free of charge with the information necessary for the production of the broadcasting statistics in the desired form.
(Art. 19 RTVA)
1 Data acquired solely for statistical purposes may not be used for other purposes unless there is a legal basis for this or the broadcaster concerned has given its consent in writing.
2 In order to guarantee data protection and confidentiality of statistics, OFCOM shall take the necessary technical and organisational measures against improper processing of the data it uses.
3 OFCOM may forward the data in paragraph 1 for statistical and scientific purposes if it is guaranteed that the recipients will comply with data protection.
(Art. 19 RTVA)
1 OFCOM publishes the statistical results that are of public interest. It may make them accessible online.
2 The results in terms of paragraph 1 must be in a form that excludes the identification of any natural or legal person unless the processed data has been made available to the public by OFCOM or by the person concerned or if the person consents to publication.
3 The use or reproduction of statistical results in terms of paragraph 1 is permitted if the source is quoted. OFCOM may provide for exceptions.
(Art. 21 RTVA)
1 The SRG SSR shall ensure the permanent conservation of its programmes.
2 It shall make its programme archives accessible to the public in a suitable form for personal and for scientific use, while respecting the rights of third parties.
3 In carrying out its tasks in terms of paragraphs 1 and 2, SRG SSR shall work with specialist institutions for audio-visual heritage in order to ensure that the archiving is carried out and access is guaranteed according to recognised professional standards.
4 SRG SSR costs shall if necessary be taken into account in accordance with Article 68a paragraph 1 letter a RTVA.
(Art. 21 RTVA)
1 OFCOM may support projects related to the permanent conservation of programmes from other Swiss broadcasters.
2 Programmes that are permanently conserved with OFCOM support must be made accessible to the public in a suitable form for personal and for scientific use, while respecting the rights of third parties.
(Art. 15 and 22 RTVA)
1 All revenue received from advertising and sponsorship in the programme service of a licensed broadcaster by the broadcaster itself or by third parties is deemed to be gross revenue from advertising and sponsorship.
2 For each calendar year, the licence fee shall be 0.5 per cent of gross revenue in excess of CHF 500,000. If the fee is chargeable for only part of a year, the exemption amount is reduced proportionately.
3 The licence fee is charged on the basis of the gross revenue achieved in the previous calendar year.
4 In the broadcaster's first two years of operation, the calculation of the licence fee is based on the gross revenue budgeted for. If, on examination of the actual gross revenue achieved in these years, the amount of the fee proves to be too high or too low, then a reimbursement will be made or an additional amount will be charged.
5 When the licence expires, the licence fee for the year of cessation of transmission operations and the preceding calendar year is charged on the basis of the gross revenue achieved in these years. If the fee charged up to cessation of operations proves to be too high or too low, then a reimbursement will be made or an additional amount will be charged.
6 OFCOM shall verify the reported gross revenues and issue the decision concerning the fee. OFCOM may commission external experts to carry out this verification.
Chapter 2 Service Agreement on the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SRG SSR) Offering for Foreign Countries2
(Art. 28 para. 1 RTVA)
The agreement between the Federal Council and SRG SSR on the editorial offering for foreign countries is concluded in each case in the form of a four-year service agreement.
(Art. 38 para. 1 let. b RTVA)
1 A complementary non-profit-oriented radio programme service must differentiate itself thematically, culturally and musically from other licensed radio programme services that can be received in the same coverage area. In particular, a non-profit-oriented programme service must take account of the linguistic and cultural minorities in the coverage area.
2 In a non-profit-oriented radio programme service, the broadcasting of advertising is not permitted, with the exception of self-advertising, which predominantly serves to build audience loyalty, including references to media partnerships as defined in Article 22 paragraph 6. The licence may provide for the broadcasting of advertising for broadcasters which make a special contribution to the training of media workers in a coverage area with fewer than 75,000 inhabitants aged 15 or more.
(Art. 39 para. 1 RTVA)
The number and extent of the coverage areas in which licences are awarded, as well as the technical means of broadcasting, is stipulated by the Federal Council:
- in Annex 1 for radio broadcasters,
- in Annex 2 for television broadcasters.
(Art. 40 RTVA)
1 The annual share of fees is:
- for broadcasters of complementary non-profit radio programme services: a maximum of 80 per cent of their operating costs;
- for other radio broadcasters and television broadcasters: a maximum of 70 per cent of their operating costs.2
2 DETEC generally reviews the share of the fees of broadcasters after five years and redefines them if necessary.
(Art. 68a and 109a RTVA)
1 The balances of the shares of the fees received by the Confederation in accordance with Article Article 68a paragraph 1 letters b-e and g and Article 109a paragraphs 1 and 2 RTVA are shown in an account on the Confederation's balance sheet.
2 OFCOM shall publish the revenue and the manner of use of the shares of fees in accordance with paragraph 1.
(Art. 41 para. 1 RTVA)
1 Broadcasters with a fee-sharing licence must produce:
- rules of procedure which show the allocation of tasks and responsibilities;
- an editorial statute; and
- a mission statement which describes the measures taken to fulfil the performance mandate.
2 In the licence, DETEC may lay down other obligations which serve to ensure diversity of opinion and programming, the safeguarding of editorial independence or the fulfilment of the performance mandate. In particular, it may require the establishment of an advisory programme service committee or, in areas with only one broadcaster with a fee-sharing licence, a representative parent organisation.
3 In the licence, DETEC may prohibit the broadcasting of specific types of programme which are contrary to the fulfilment of the performance mandate.
(Art. 44 para. 1 let. a RTVA)
The programmes broadcast during the prime time of a broadcaster with a performance mandate must as a rule be predominantly produced within the coverage area.
(Art. 45 para. 1 RTVA)
1 OFCOM carries out the tender procedures.
2 The public invitation to tender for a licence must include at least:
- the extent of the coverage area and the technical means of broadcasting;
- a description of the performance mandate;
- in the case of licences in accordance with Article 38 RTVA: the amount of the annual share of the fees and its maximum percentage in relation to the broadcaster's operating costs;
- the term of the licence;
- the criteria for the award.
3 The candidate must submit all information necessary for the assessment of the tender. If the tender is incomplete or includes insufficient information, OFCOM may after allowing an additional period abandon processing of the tender.
4 OFCOM shall forward all the documentation relevant to the evaluation of the tender to the interested parties. The candidate may claim an overriding private interest and require that specific information be excluded from the forwarding process. After the procedure, the candidate has an opportunity to comment on the statements of the interested parties.
5 If extraordinary changes occur between the publication of the invitation to tender and the award of the licence, the licensing authority may adapt, suspend or cancel the procedure.
(Art. 45 para. 2 RTVA)
1 OFCOM may award licences for the broadcasting of short-term local or regional programme services which are transmitted using wireless terrestrial technology. A programme service may be broadcast on a maximum of 30 days within a maximum period of 60 days.
2 An organiser receives a maximum of one such licence per calendar year.
3 Licences for short-term programme services are awarded on application without invitation to tender if it is expected that there are no more interested broadcasters than there are available frequencies.
4 Such licences may in particular be awarded on the occasion of an important event in the coverage area, to support educational or training activity or within the framework of youth work.
(Art. 55 para. 1 and 59 para. 3 RTVA)
1 Access-entitled programme services and coupled services which are subject to a broadcasting obligation in accordance with Article 46 of this Ordinance must be broadcast without delay, unchanged and in full.
2 DETEC regulates the technical requirements for the adequate broadcast quality of access-entitled programme services and coupled services subject to a broadcasting obligation via wireless terrestrial networks (Art. 55 para. 1 RTVA) and by wire (Art. 59 para. 3 RTVA). In doing so, it shall take account of international standards and recommendations. Depending on the type of programme service and technical means of broadcasting, it may provide for different quality levels.
(Art. 55 para. 3, 59 para. 6 and 60 para. 4 RTVA)
1 If a telecommunications service provider broadcasts an access-entitled programme service, the following coupled services provided by the broadcaster must also be broadcast:
- narrowband data transmission in text and image;
- multiple sound channels;
- control signal for the analogue or digital recording option;
- services for people with sensory disabilities as defined in Article 7 paragraphs 3 and 4 and 24 paragraph 3 RTVA;
- additional information for radio accompanying the programme service;
- Dolby Digital;
- information for the electronic programme guide.
2 If a telecommunications service provider broadcasts a non-access-entitled programme service, the coupled services for the people with sensory disabilities as defined in Article 7 paragraph 3 and 24 paragraph 3 RTVA must also be broadcast.
3 DETEC may issue technical regulations and exempt certain technologies from the broadcasting obligation for coupled services.
(Art. 54 para. 4 RTVA and Art. 24 para. 1bis TCA)
1 The Federal Council shall issue directives for the use of radio frequencies which are intended entirely or in part for the broadcasting of radio and television programme services in accordance with the national frequency allocation plan (Art. 25 TCA1), and for the award of radiocommunication licences for such frequencies.
2 The Federal Communications Commission and interested parties shall be consulted before the directives are issued.
3 Radiocommunication licences for the utilisation of frequencies in accordance with paragraph 1 may be put out to public tender or awarded only when, based on the directives in accordance with paragraph 1, DETEC has laid down the details of the specific use of the frequencies.
(Art. 55 para. 2 RTVA)
1 Chargeable costs for the calculation of the cost-based compensation in accordance with Article 55 paragraph 2 RTVA are the telecommunications service provider's costs that are in a causal relationship with the broadcasting of the programme service concerned (relevant costs). These include:
- the additional costs for the parts of the installation used by the broadcaster; and
- a proportional element of the joint costs and overheads.
2 The costs in accordance with paragraph 1 must be determined according to the following principles:
- the costs correspond to the expenditure and investments of an efficient provider.
- the installation is valued using book values.
- the amortisation period takes account of the economic life of the installation.
- the data used for the calculation must be transparent and must come from reliable sources.
- interest on the capital employed is charged in accordance with conditions which are customary for the sector.
3 If a telecommunications service provider broadcasts an access-entitled programme service, it shall keep this activity separate in its accounting system from all other activities and shall bill the broadcaster separately for the costs of broadcasting the programme service. The telecommunications service provider shall carry out the accounting in accordance with the recognised principles of best practice.
(Art. 57 RTVA)
1 A contribution in accordance with Article 57 paragraph 1 RTVA shall be paid to broadcasters of radio programme services with a fee-sharing licence whose annual operating costs for broadcasting the programme service and feeding the transmission signal are extraordinarily high in relation to the number of persons covered.
2 DETEC shall determine the level of cost per person covered from which a broadcaster has a claim to a contribution and which services are chargeable as costs.
3 The available credit is split between broadcasters entitled to a contribution in relation to the cost per person covered. The basis for the calculation is the previous year's operating costs for broadcasting and the signal feed.1
3bis A contribution may amount to a maximum of one quarter of these operating costs. If the entire credit is not exhausted because of this restriction, the remaining sum is split according to the principle in paragraph 3 between those broadcasters entitled to a contribution for whom less than a quarter of their operating costs have been covered.2
4 If a broadcaster is entitled to a contribution, OFCOM shall determine this each year in a decision. If the broadcaster does not provide the necessary information as part of the annual report in due time (Art. 27 paragraph 7) or provides incomplete information so that the information cannot be taken into account in the calculation of contributions in accordance with para. 3, the broadcaster has no claim to a contribution for the year in question.
5 In a broadcaster's first two years of operation, the basis for calculation is its budgeted expenditure for the contribution year, rounded up to a full year. If a contribution paid proves to be too high or too low on the basis of the actual costs, then a reimbursement will be made or an additional amount will be paid within the framework of the available credits.
(Art. 58 RTVA)
1 OFCOM may contribute towards the introduction of terrestrial digital audio broadcasting (T-DAB).
2 DETEC shall specify in advance the date from which sufficient other financing options are available. In doing so it shall take particular account of the availability and use of reception equipment.
3 No broadcaster may receive contributions for a specific form of broadcasting for longer than ten years.
(Art. 58 RTVA)
1 Contributions towards the introduction of new broadcasting technologies are only made in response to an application.
2 They are only made to Swiss broadcasters.
3 The subsidy amounts to a maximum of 80 per cent of the cost of broadcasting the programme service. Only broadcasting costs that are proportionate to the benefits are chargeable.
4 If OFCOM's resources are not sufficient to cover all applications that meet the requirements, all contributions in the year concerned shall be reduced by the same proportion. DETEC may decide on an order of priorities.
(Art. 59 para. 2 RTVA)
1 Foreign programme services that are to be broadcast by wire in accordance with Article 59 paragraph 2 RTVA may be such programme services that are transmitted in a Swiss national language and which make a special contribution to fulfilling the performance mandate provided for by the Federal Constitution, in particular in that they:
- report in depth on social, political, economic or cultural phenomena within the framework of extensive editorial formats;
- give considerable space to artistic film productions;
- make special editorial contributions to the education of the public;
- broadcast special editorial productions for young people, old people or people with sensory disabilities; or
- regularly broadcast Swiss productions or regularly deal with Swiss topics.
2 The foreign programme services in accordance with paragraph 1 as well as the area in which they must be broadcast by wire are listed in the Annex of this Ordinance.
(Art. 59 para. 3 and 60 para. 2 RTVA)
The maximum number of programme services to be broadcast by wire free of charge within a specific area in accordance with Articles 59 and 60 RTVA is:
- for the analogue broadcasting of radio programme services: 25;
- for the digital broadcasting of radio programme services: 50;
- for the digital broadcasting of television programme services: 30.
(Art. 59 para. 4 RTVA)
1 Telecommunications service providers that broadcast programme services and which reach at least 100 households are subject to the broadcasting obligation.
1bis DETEC may revoke the obligation relating to the analogue broadcasting of television programme services under Articles 59 and 60 RTVA provided such services are broadcast digitally and are received digitally by an overwhelming majority of the public. It may do so for all programme services or for specific services and for the entire country or for specific regions.1
1 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 15 June 2012, in force since 1 Aug. 2012 (AS 2012 3667).
2 Repealed by No I of the Ordinance of 5 Nov. 2014, with effect from 1 Jan. 2015 (AS 2014 3849).
3 Inserted by No I of the Ordinance of 12 March 2010 (AS 2010 965). Repealed by No I of the Ordinance of 5 Nov. 2014, with effect from 1 Jan. 2015 (AS 2014 3849).
(Art. 64 RTVA)
1 If the telecommunications service provider uses a different technical processing procedure from the broadcaster, the programme services and the coupled services must be transmitted in such a way that the audience is able to use them in a quality corresponding to the requirements of Article 45.
2 If international standards exist for equipment or services that are used to process programme services or with regard to open interfaces, DETEC may declare these standards binding if this is necessary to safeguard diversity of opinion.
3 The telecommunications service provider must allow the broadcaster to manage its customer relations. Telecommunications service providers and broadcasters shall set down the technical and commercial implementation of customer relations management in an agreement. DETEC may issue technical and administrative requirements.
4 The telecommunications service provider may not use data that it has acquired in connection with the implementation of paragraph 3 for other purposes and in particular may not forward it to other business units, subsidiary companies, partnership undertakings and third parties.
(Art. 68a RTVA)
The Federal Council shall determine the amount of the fee for each private and collective household before the change in system from the reception fee to the radio and television fee.
(Art. 69 RTVA)
1 The collection agency collects the household fee for a fee period of one year at a time. It shall stagger the start of the fee period.
2 Any person liable to pay the fee may request three-month invoices for the household to which they belong.
3 The collection agency sends out the invoice in the first month of each invoice period.
4 The collection agency bases its invoice on the make-up of the household notified to the collection agency at the start of the first month of the fee period in terms of Article 67 paragraph 3.
(Art. 69 para. 3 RTVA)
1 The fee becomes due for payment 60 days after receipt of the annual invoice and 30 days after receipt of a three-month invoice.
2 If the collection agency fails to invoice the fee or if the invoice proves to be incorrect, it shall issue a further demand for the amount due or provide a refund.
3 The prescriptive period for the fee begins on the due date for payment of the fee and amounts to five years.
(Art. 68 RTVA)
1 The collection agency may bill the following charges:
2 The collection agency shall notify the households of these charges each time it sends out an invoice.
(Art. 68 para. 6 RTVA)
1 The fee collection agency collects the reception fees once a year. The person liable to pay the fee may request an invoice for each quarter.
2 The fee collection agency shall stagger the invoice periods for annual invoices.
3 It shall send out the invoices at the following times at the earliest:
- in the case of annual invoices: in the second month of the invoice period;
- in the case of quarterly invoices: in the first month of the invoice period.
(Art. 69b RTVA)
1 The collection agency shall assess at least every three years whether the requirement for the exemption of a private household from the obligation to pay under Article 69b paragraph 1 letter a RTVA is still being met. If the requirement is no longer being met, the collection agency shall collect the fee from the month following that in which the exemption ceases to apply.
2 The members of a household are obliged to notify the collection agency immediately if the requirement for the exemption of the households from the obligation to pay under Article 69b paragraph 1 letter a RTVA is no longer being met.
3 The following persons are exempted from the obligation to pay:
- diplomatic staff, consular officials, administrative and technical staff and service staff of diplomatic missions, permanent missions or other representations to intergovernmental organisations and consular posts run by professional consular officials if they hold a legitimation card issued by the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) (legitimation card types B, C, D, E, K red, K blue or K violet) and do not hold Swiss citizenship;
- the members of senior management (legitimation card type B) and high-ranking officials (legitimation card type C) of institutional beneficiaries that have concluded a headquarters agreement with the Federal Council, provided they enjoy diplomatic status, hold a legitimation card issued by the FDFA and do not hold Swiss citizenship;
- the persons authorised to accompany a person in terms of letters a or b with the same status as the accompanied person, provided they do not hold Swiss citizenship.
4 Deafblind persons are exempted from the fee provided there is no person in their household who is liable to pay the fee. Paragraphs 1 and 2 apply by analogy.
(Art. 69d para. 1 RTVA)
1 DETEC is responsible for delegating the collection of the household fee to an agency outside the federal administration.
2 If an agency of this type is used, it shall have the official title: Swiss Radio and Television Fee Collection Agency.
3 DETEC and the collection agency shall regulate the details of the performance mandate and remuneration of the collection agency in a contract.
(Art. 69d para. 2 RTVA)
1 The collection agency shall keep its books and render account according to one of the recognised accounting standards in terms of Article 962a of the Code of Obligations (CO)2 and der Ordinance of 21 November 20123 on Recognised Accounting Standards.
2 The collection agency is required to have an ordinary audit.
3 It shall also issue an annual report in accordance with Article 958 paragraph 2 CO. The additional requirements of Article 961 CO apply.
4 Article 961d paragraph 1 CO does not apply to the collection agency.
(Art. 69d para. 2 RTVA)
1 The collection agency provides OFCOM with an interim report within 30 days of the end of the first, second and third quarters and an activity report after the fourth quarter that contain the following information as a minimum:
- the number of private and collective households liable to pay the fee;
- the amount of fees invoiced and collected;
- number the number of invoices, reminders, debt enforcement cases and debt enforcement orders;
- exemptions from the fee in terms of Articles 69b and 109c RTVA and Article 61 paragraph 4;
- the number of persons employed by the collection agency.
2 The collection agency shall submit the annual report, the comprehensive audit report (Article 728b paragraph 1 CO2) and the accounts for the fee to OFCOM by the end of April of the following year at the latest.
3 OFCOM shall approve the annual accounts for the fee.
4 The collection agency must grant OFCOM access free of charge to all files that it requires in connection with its supervisory activities. These include in particular the books and accounts in terms of Article 63.
5 OFCOM may carry out follow-up inspections at the collection agency's premises and may instruct external specialists to carry out a financial audit.
(Art. 69e para. 4 RTVA)
The collection agency shall publish the annual invoice (Art. 958 para. 2 CO2), the audit report (Art. 728b para. 2 CO) and the activity report with the details in terms of Article 64 paragraph 1 by the end of April of the following year at the latest
(Art. 69e RTVA)
The collection agency shall transfer the revenues to the beneficiaries designated by OFCOM.
(Art. 69g RTVA)
1 The cantons and communes shall supply the collection agency with:
- the data under Article 6 letters a-h, j, o-s and u of the Register Harmonisation Act of 23 June 20062 (RHA);
- other data under Article 7 RHA that is required to identify the persons liable to pay the fee and send out the invoices.
2 The data is supplied in a structured and standardised form via the Federal Information and Communication Platform. OFCOM shall specify in a directive the precise data characteristics in accordance with the official catalogue (Art. 4 para. 4 RHA) and indicate the applicable standards for supplying the data and for correcting incomplete data supplies.
3 Each canton shall ensure that the data on the households of all person registered on its territory are supplies to the collection agency by a central office or via the communes.
4 The data must be supplied to the collection agency on a monthly basis within the first three working days of each month. Each supply shall include the entries that have changed since the previous supply. Once a year the canton or the commune must supply the entire data set by a date specified by OFCOM.
(Art. 69g RTVA)
1 The FDFA shall provide the collection agency with the following details from the Ordipro information system on every person that is exempt from paying the fee under Article 69b paragraph 1 letter b RTVA:
- surname and first name(s);
- home address;
- date of birth;
- legitimation card data;
- insurance number in terms of Article 50c of the Federal Act of 20 December 19462 on the Old-Age and Survivors' Insurance (OASIA).
2 The data must be supplied to the collection agency on a monthly basis within the first three working days of each month via the Federal Information and Communication Platform. Each supply shall comprise the complete data set for each data characteristic. OFCOM shall specify in a directive the applicable standards for supplying the data and for correcting incomplete data supplies.
(Art. 68a para. 1 and Art. 70 RTVA)
The Federal Council shall determine the minimum turnover for the obligation to pay, the amount of the fee and the tariff categories before the change in system from the reception fee to the radio and television fee.
(Art. 70 RTVA)
1 Undertakings in terms of Article 70 paragraph 2 RTVA also include undertakings that join together solely in order to pay the corporate fee (corporate fee groups). A corporate fee group must comprise at least 30 undertakings.
2 To ascertain the total turnover of a corporate fee group, all the turnovers of the group members are added together.
3 A corporate fee group is liable to pay the fee instead of its members. The joint liability of group members is governed by the Article 15 paragraph 1 letter c of the Value Added Tax Act of 12 June 20091 (VATA) and Article 22 of the Value Added Tax Ordinance of 27 November 20092 (VATO).
4 The formation, change in composition, dissolution and representation of corporate fee groups is governed mutatis mutandis by Article 13 VATA and Article 15-20 paragraphs 1 and 2 VATO. Applications to form a group and to join a group, and notification of leaving a group and of the dissolution of a group must be submitted in writing to the Federal Tax Administration (FTA) 15 days at the latest after the start of a calendar year. Delayed submissions only take effect the following year
5 Admission to a corporate fee group is conditional on the undertaking giving written notice to the FTA that it waives the group representative from preserving tax secrecy, insofar as this is useful for the assessment and collection of the fee.
(Art. 70 RTVA)
1 A combination of autonomous agencies of a public authority that is liable to VAT also constitutes an undertaking in terms of Article 70 paragraph 2 RTVA.
3 The obligation to pay is that of the public authority to which the combined units belong.
(Art. 70a RTVA)
1 The FTA shall issue annual invoices electronically to undertakings that are liable to pay the fee, beginning in February and ending in October of each year.
2 As soon as the FTA has received all the information it requires to allocate an undertaking to a tariff category, it shall invoice the undertaking electronically for the total amount of the fee in the next dispatch of invoices.
3 If the FTA has not invoiced the fee or if the invoice proves to be incorrect, the FTA shall demand the correct amount or refund any overpayment.
Undertakings with a turnover that falls into the lowest tariff category under Article 67b shall be refunded the fee on request provided in the financial year for which the fee is charged:
- they made a profit that is less than one tenth of the amount of the fee; or
- they made a loss.
(Art. 70a RTVA)
1 The FTA shall transfer the total net revenue from the corporate fee collected to SRG SSR.
2 The net revenue comprises the fees invoiced in the accounting year plus default interest and also takes account of:
- the adjusted increase or decrease in the value of the receivables (change in the del credere);
- the change in the sum of all suspended receivables;
- the bad debt losses;
- the FTA's operating costs for collecting the fee.
3 The FTA shall transfer the net revenue in nine instalments, each 80 days after issuing an invoice. In January of the following year, the final account for the accounting year shall be issued, together with a final payment or an invoice to SRG SSR.
(Art. 70b para. 1 RTVA)
Default interest shall be invoiced by the FTA when the amount of interest exceeds 100 francs. The foregoing does not apply if the debt is claimed as part of compulsory enforcement proceedings. The invoice is sent out electronically.
(Art. 70c para. 2 RTVA)
The FTA shall publish a minimum of the following information by the end of April of the following year at the latest:
- the number of undertakings liable to pay the fee, according to tariff category;
- the receivables invoiced, collected and suspended, according to tariff category;
- the status and changes in the del credere;
- the bad debt losses;
- the default interest invoiced;
- the discretionary estimates, according to tariff category;
- the reminders and debt enforcement cases;
- the FTA's operating costs for the collection of the fee;
- the number of combinations (Art. 67c and 67d) and refunds (Art. 67f).
1 Each year, OFCOM shall publish:
- for the household and the corporate fee and consolidated for both:
- the total revenues from the fee,
- the collection costs;
- details of how the revenue is used according to category of use.
2 The collection agency and the FTA shall provide OFCOM with the required details.
(Art. 72 para. 1 and 2 RTVA)
1 The right to provide a short report on a public event in Switzerland covers a contribution of three minutes at most. The duration of the short report must be commensurate with the event.
2 If a public event extends over a maximum of one day and consists of several parts, the claim to the short reporting right does not relate to each part of the event but to its entirety. If a public event extends over more than 24 hours, there is an entitlement to one daily short report.
3 The short report may be broadcast only after the end of the public event or of the self-contained part of the event.
(Art. 72 para. 3 let. a RTVA)
1 Third-party broadcasters which have claimed the right to direct access to a public event must register in advance as follows:
- for scheduled events: at least 10 days before the start of the event;
- for events arranged at short notice and events for which the particular interest of the third-party broadcaster occurs only in the short term due to special circumstances: at the earliest possible time.
2 The organiser of the public event and the broadcaster with first exploitation or exclusive rights shall decide on access at the earliest possible opportunity and in the case of events that come under paragraph 1 letter a at least 5 days before the start of the event.
3 Unless contractual agreements already exist, priority shall be given to those third-party broadcasters which guarantee the greatest possible coverage in Switzerland or which, for example, demonstrate a particular interest in reporting the event on the basis of their performance mandate or a close relationship linking the event to their coverage area.
4 If access is refused, the third-party broadcaster may apply to OFCOM for measures under Article 72 paragraph 4 RTVA. It must submit the application immediately after refusal of access.
5 The direct access of third-party broadcasters must be exercised in such a way that, if possible, the holding of the event and the exercise of exclusive and first exploitation rights are not adversely affected.
(Art. 72 para. 3 let. b RTVA)
1 The organiser of the public event and the broadcaster who holds first exploitation or exclusive rights shall make the signal available to the interested secondary broadcaster without delay on request for the purposes of producing a short report. The request must be made at least 48 hours before the event.
2 The secondary broadcaster must pay the costs arising for access to the signal. These include the technical and personnel costs as well as compensation for additional costs incurred due to the granting of the short reporting right.
(Art. 73 para. 1 RTVA)
1 Free access to an event of major importance to society is guaranteed if in each linguistic region respectively at least 80 per cent of households are able to receive the transmission without additional expenditure.
2 Events of major importance to society must as a rule be made accessible to the public in the form of partial or total live coverage. Deferred partial or total coverage is sufficient if this is in the public interest.
3 If a broadcaster who holds exclusive rights for the transmission of the event is unable to guarantee free access, it must provide the transmission signal to one or more other broadcasters subject to appropriate conditions.
(Art. 76 RTVA)
OFCOM shall promote the training and professional development of programme makers primarily through service agreements with a term of several years with institutions which continuously maintain a range of significant training and professional development services in the field of information journalism for radio and television.
(Art. 77 RTVA)
1 As a rule, at least half of the revenue from the licence fee must be used to support research projects in the radio and television sector.
2 In particular, support shall be given to scientific research projects whose results provide information on programming, social, economic and technical developments in radio and television and which therefore enable the Administration and industry to respond to these developments.
3 OFCOM decides on the award of contributions to research projects. The contributions are as a rule awarded on the basis of a public invitation to tender; OFCOM may specify key topics and lay down the maximum proportional contribution that may be made to the imputable costs of a research project.
(Art. 78-81 RTVA)
1 The Foundation for Audience Research (the Foundation) as well as the undertakings controlled by it must each year submit an annual report and annual accounts to DETEC by the end of April of the following year. The Foundation's regulations shall lay down the content and presentation of the report. The Foundation and the undertakings controlled by it are subject to the obligation to provide information in accordance with Article 17 paragraph 1 RTVA.
2 The most important results to be published annually by the Foundation in accordance with Article 79 paragraph 1 RTVA shall include at least:
- the possibilities of receiving radio and television programme services and the use of these possibilities by the population resident in Switzerland;
- the use of licensed and other radio and television programme services which can be received in Switzerland. The usage data must be expressed in penetration, duration of use and market share. The breakdown of usage data into days of the week, programme service groups and socio-demographic characteristics must be undertaken by linguistic region. The data on the licensed radio and television programme services must be shown for their coverage areas.
3 DETEC shall regulate the details.
4 The Foundation's regulations must specify which data:
- is considered as sufficient for broadcasters and scientific research in accordance with Article 78 paragraph 2 RTVA;
- is deemed to be basic data on use in accordance with Article 79 paragraph 2 RTVA and must be provided at prices which cover the costs.
(Art. 82 RTVA)
When appointing members to the Independent Complaints Authority, the Federal Council shall ensure appropriate representation of both genders and the different linguistic regions.
(Art. 83 para. 1 let. b and 91 RTVA)
The regulations of the Complaints Authority (Art. 85 para. 2 RTVA) shall regulate the details of the election and activity of the three ombudsman services and the supervision thereof.
(Art. 93 para. 5 RTVA)
1 The ombudsman services shall be self-financed through billing in accordance with Article 93 paragraph 5 RTVA.
2 They shall bill the procedural costs to the broadcasters concerned on the basis of time spent.
(Art. 100 RTVA)
1 The administrative fee charge in accordance with Article 100 RTVA shall be calculated on the basis of time spent.
3 For the determination of the licence fee, an administrative fee shall be charged if the broadcaster causes extraordinary expenditure as a result of its conduct.
4 For recording the data of a broadcaster which is obliged to notify and for recording changes to notifiable circumstances in terms of Article 2, OFCOM shall charge an administrative fee if the broadcaster causes expenditure which goes beyond mere recording as a result of its conduct.
5 For processing enquiries, an administrative fee shall be charged if the enquiry causes extraordinary expenditure. OFCOM shall inform the person liable for the fee of the provisional fee in advance.
(Art. 100 RTVA)
2 The administrative fee in terms of para. 1 may be further reduced and the fee for the other charged-for activities may be reduced for:
- broadcasters to which a licence has been awarded for broadcasting an advertising-free programme service;
- broadcasters which prove that they have an operating income of less than CHF 1 million. Operating income is deemed to be revenue related to operating activity, in particular advertising and sponsorship revenue as well as contributions and subsidies.
(Art. 103 and 104 para. 2 RTVA)2
1 DETEC shall issue the technical and administrative regulations.
1 Inserted by No I of the Ordinance of 12 March 2010, in force since 1 Apr. 2010 (AS 2010 965).
2 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 25 May 2016, in force since 1 July 2016 (AS 2016 2151).
3 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 25 May 2016, in force since 1 July 2016 (AS 2016 2151).
4 Amended by No I of the Ordinance of 25 May 2016, in force since 1 July 2016 (AS 2016 2151).
(Art. 109a RTVA)
1 45 million francs shall be made available for the uses under Article 109a paragraphs 1 and 2 RTVA.
2 OFCOM shall determine the amounts made available for the various purposes under under Articles 84 and 85.
(Art. 109a para. 1 let. a RTVA)
1 On request, OFCOM shall support the training and continuing professional development of employees of fee-sharing broadcasters. Support is provided for training and continuing professional development courses in the areas of journalistic skills and competences, editorial management, quality assurance and in technical and financial matters provided they serve to fulfil the performance mandate.
2 Support is provided in particular to:
- employees who use the professional services of external training and continuing professional development institutions as well as journalism- and media-related institutions and organisations;
- broadcasters that offer their employees a specific internal training or continuing professional development course in cooperation with external specialists from training and continuing professional development institutions and from journalism- and media-related institutions and organisations;
- complementary, non-profit-orientated radio broadcasters that continuously train several interns at the same time and which have employed related specialists for this purpose;
- specific training and continuing professional development courses from training and continuing professional development institutions and from journalism- and media-related institutions and organisations that are tailored to the specific needs of local and regional fee-sharing broadcasters;
- organisers of continuing professional development conferences devoted primarily to new media that are aimed at employees of fee-sharing broadcasters.
3 The following are in particular eligible, provided they are not covered by other public subsidies:
- the cost of courses in terms of paragraph 2 letter a;
- the cost of external specialists in terms of paragraph 2 letter b;
- the cost of specialists in terms of paragraph 2 letter c;
- the cost of planning and holding training courses and conferences including the preparation of related course documentation in terms of paragraph 2 letters d and e.
4 Support amounts to a maximum of 80 per cent of the eligible costs.
5 OFCOM shall periodically determine the available amount and verify the effectiveness of the use made of the resources.
(Art. 109a para. 1 let. b RTVA)
1 The subsidy paid to fee-sharing broadcasters amounts to a maximum of 80 per cent:
- of the sum that the broadcaster pays for the T-DAB broadcasting of its programme service;
- of the investments required for processing new broadcasting technologies.
2 DETEC shall designate the chargeable expenditures in terms of paragraph 1 letter b.
3 The provisions of Articles 50 and 51 apply unless this Article provides otherwise.
(Art. 109a para. 1 let. b RTVA)
1 The subsidy paid to fee-sharing television broadcasters amounts to a maximum of 80 per cent of their chargeable expenditures.
2 DETEC determines the television production techniques worthy of promotion.
3 The provisions of Articles 50 and 51 apply unless this Article provides otherwise.
(Art. 109b para. 2 RTVA)
1 The Federal Council shall determine the date on which the reception fee is replaced by the radio and television fee (change in system) at an appropriate time.
2 Until the change in system, the Swiss collection agency for Radio and Television Reception Fees (the previous fee collection agency) shall collect the reception fee in accordance with the previous law (Art. 58-70 and 101 Federal Act of 24 March 2006 on Radio and Television [RTVA 2006]1 and the previous Articles 57-672).
3 The radio and television fee shall be collected following the change in system.
(Art. 109b para. 4 RTVA)
1 The reception fee shall be collected until the change in system.
2 In the last 12 months before the date of change in system, the previous fee collection agency shall invoice the fee for the remaining time in accordance with the previous staggered scale (Article 60a paragraph 21).
3 The following applies to the invoicing and due date:
- the invoices for the first month shall be issued at the start of the month and are due for payment within 30 days;
- the invoices for the last three months shall all be issued at the end of the month previous to the last three months and are due for payment at the end of the third last month;
- The invoices for the other months shall be issued at the end of the previous month and are due for payment at the end of the month.
1 In the first year of collection, the staggered system of invoicing for the household fee under Article 58 paragraph 1 shall be established. The collection agency shall specify reduced fee periods of between one and eleven months.
2 All invoices in terms of paragraph 1 shall be issued in the first month of the fee period and are due for payment within 30 days.
3 Some households shall already receive an invoice for 12 months. The due date is governed by Article 59 paragraph 1.
(Art. 69g RTVA)
1 The communes and cantons shall begin the monthly data deliveries to the collection agency under Article 67 at the latest 18 months after this provision comes into force. The first delivery must comprise the entire data set with all characteristics.
2 The collection agency shall confirm to the authority delivering the data that the data delivery has been made in accordance with statutory requirements and without technical difficulties, or it shall report the difficulties that occurred.
3 A contribution under Article 69g paragraph 4 RTVA amounts to a single maximum payment of:
- 2000 francs to a commune;
- 25 000 francs to a canton.
4 The following are required in order to receive a contribution in terms of paragraph 3:
- an application by the canton or commune to the collection agency;
- proof of the effective, specific investment costs;
- confirmation from the collection agency in terms of paragraph 2.
5 In the absence of proof in terms of paragraph 4 letter b, a lump sum payment shall be made. This amounts to 500 francs per commune and 5000 francs per canton.
(Art. 69g RTVA)
The FDFA shall provide the collection agency with the data required to collect the fee under Article 67a at the latest 18 months after this provision comes into force.
(Art. 69b and 109b RTVA)
1 The previous fee collection agency shall provide the new collection agency at the latest 18 months after this provision comes into force with the following data on persons exempt from the fee (former Art. 641), provided the data is available:
- surname and first name;
- home address;
- date of birth;
- language for correspondence;
- surname and first name of the persons living in the same private household as the person exempt from the fee.
(Art. 109b RTVA)
1 Following the change in system, Articles 68-70 and 101 paragraph 1 RTVA 20061 and the previous Articles 57-672 of this Ordinance continue to apply to circumstances that arose prior to the change in system, including competencies, unless the said articles provide otherwise.
2 Following the change in system, DETEC may instruct the previous fee collection agency or another external agency to collect the reception fees and carry out related duties for a limited period.
3 Receivables due to the Confederation by persons and undertakings liable to pay the fee at the time of the change in systems remain due.
4 When the previous fee collection agency or a different external agency in terms of paragraph 2 ceases its activities, OFCOM shall take over all duties connected with collecting the reception fees. In derogation from Article 69 paragraph 5 RTVA 2006, legal recourse is governed by the the general provisions on the administration of federal justice, insofar as OFCOM issues debt enforcement orders.
5 When the previous fee collection agency ceases its activities, the new collection agency assumes responsibility for the certificates of loss for outstanding reception fees.
7 The expenditure of the external agencies and of OFCOM in terms of paragraphs 2 and 4 is covered by the revenue from the reception fees. If this revenue is insufficient, the expenditure shall be covered by the revenue from the radio and television fee.
8 If the revenue from the reception fees exceeds the compensation payments in terms of paragraph 7, it shall be passed on to SRG SSR.
(Art 109b para. 5 RTVA)
1 If the change in system takes place in the first half a calendar year, allocation to the tariff categories is based on the total turnover in the VAT tax period that ended in the year previous to the previous year.
2 In the first year, the FTA shall electronically invoice all undertakings liable to pay the fee for which the information required for their allocation to a tariff category is available for the fee in the first month following the change in system. The FTA shall invoice the remaining undertakings electronically as soon as the required information is available.
(Art 109c para. 1 RTVA)
1 An application for an exemption from the fee may be made in writing at any time after receipt of the invoice to the collection agency.
2 Any person listed on the fee invoice may apply. This applies to all members of the household concerned.
3 The collection agency shall provide an application form. The application may only be made on this form. OFCOM shall specify the content of the form.
4 If the application is made within 30 days of the date on the annual invoice or the first three-month invoice of any fee period and is approved, the exemption applies retrospectively from the start of the relevant fee period until its end. If the application is made later, the exemption applies from the following month until the end of the relevant fee fee period. The collection agency shall send the adults in the household written confirmation.
5 No charge is made for processing the application.
6 The collection agency shall notify OFCOM of the households exempted from the fee and their members.
7 If a household is dissolved, the exemption of its former members from the obligation to pay expires.
(Art. 109c para. 2 RTVA)
Devices suitable for receiving radio or television programme services are:
- devices intended for receiving programme services or which contain components that are exclusively intended for receiving such services;
- multifunctional devices, provided they are equivalent to devices in terms of letter a in view of the range of programme services receivable and reception quality.
(Art. 109c para. 4 RTVA)
1 Written notification must be given to the collection agency of any means of reception in terms of Article 109c paragraph 4 RTVA.
2 Each adult member of the private household is responsible for the notification.
3 The obligation to pay begins on the first day of the month following the date on which the reception device became capable of operation or began operating.
4 The collection agency shall notify OFCOM of households newly liable to pay the fee and of their members.
(Art. 114 para. 2 RTVA)
This Ordinance comes into force on 1 April 2007.
1 Originally Art. 83
(Art. 38 let. a)
(Not available in English)
(Art. 38 let. b)
(Not available in English)
(Art. 52 para. 2)