Broadcasting and Television Act

(Original Enactment: Act 16 of 1963)

(30th March 1985)
An Act to provide for the control of broadcasting and television services and for matters connected therewith.
[3rd August 1963]
Short title
1.  This Act may be cited as the Broadcasting and Television Act.
2.  In this Act —
“broadcasting apparatus” means any apparatus capable of or designed or constructed for the transmission or reception of broadcast matter by radio waves, wire or cable;
“broadcast matter” means any signs or signals transmitted by a broadcasting station, whether for aural or visual reception or both, and includes any music, theatrical or other entertainment, concert, lecture, speech, address, news and information of any kind so transmitted;
“broadcasting station” means a station which transmits broadcast matter by radio waves, wire or cable for reception by the general public;
“radio waves” means electromagnetic waves of frequencies lower than 3,000 gigacycles per second propagated in space without artificial guide;
“regulations” means regulations made under this Act;
“wire” or “cable” means any wire or cable used for the purpose of transmitting or receiving broadcast matter with any casing, coating, tube or pipe enclosing the same, and any appliances and apparatus connected therewith for the purpose of fixing or insulating the same.
Minister may delegate his powers
3.—(1)  The Minister may delegate all or any of his powers under this Act, except the power to make regulations, to such officer or officers as he thinks fit, and may appoint officers for the purpose of carrying into effect the provisions of this Act.
(2)  All such officers shall be deemed to be public servants within the meaning of the Penal Code [Cap. 224].
*   The former sections 3 and 4 were repealed by Act 33 of 1979.
Licensing of broadcasting station
4.—(1)  No person shall establish any broadcasting station in Singapore except under or in accordance with a licence granted under this Act.
(2)  Every such licence shall be in such form and for such period and may contain such terms and conditions as the Minister may determine.
(3)  In granting a licence under this Act, the Minister may require the licensee to pay a premium for the issue of the licence or such annual fee as the Minister may determine.
5.  Any person who establishes a broadcasting station without a licence shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $2,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months.
Power of search
6.—(1)  Any officer, being generally authorised, or being specially authorised in writing, in that behalf by the Minister, may at any reasonable hour enter and search any broadcasting station, ship, aircraft, vehicle or place where such officer has reasonable cause to believe that an offence under this Act or the regulations has been or is being committed.
(2)  Any person who refuses such officer access to such broadcasting station, ship, aircraft, vehicle or place or otherwise obstructs or hinders him in effecting an entrance thereto shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $500 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 months or to both.
Non-compliance with this Act, etc.
7.  Every omission or neglect to comply with, and every act done or attempted to be done contrary to this Act or the regulations, or in breach of the conditions and restrictions subject to or upon which any licence has been issued, shall be deemed to be an offence under this Act, and for every such offence not otherwise specially provided for, the offender shall, in addition to the forfeiture of any articles seized, be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $1,000.
Trial of offences
8.—(1)  All offences under this Act or the regulations shall be cognizable by a Magistrate’s Court or District Court.
(2)  In the case of a conviction involving a fine, the Court inflicting the fine may direct, on the application of the officer conducting the prosecution, that any part not exceeding one-half thereof shall be paid to any person who has given such information as had led to the conviction of the offender or offenders, or, if there are more than one such person, may direct it to be divided amongst them in such proportions as the Court directs.
Compounding of offences
9.—(1)  Any officer, being authorised in writing in that behalf by the Minister, may compound any offence under this Act or the regulations by accepting from a person reasonably suspected of having committed the offence a sum of money not exceeding $500.
(2)  On payment of such sum of money, no further proceedings shall be taken against that person in respect of the offence.
10.—(1)  The Minister may make regulations —
(a)prescribing the manner in which applications for licences under this Act are to be made;
(b)prescribing the terms and conditions on which licences are granted and the duties of licensees; and
(c)generally for carrying out the purposes of this Act.
(2)  All regulations made under this section shall be published in the Gazette and shall be presented to Parliament as soon as possible after publication, and if a resolution is passed pursuant to a motion notice whereof has been given for a sitting day not later than the first available sitting day of Parliament next after the expiry of 3 months after the date when the regulations are so presented annulling the regulations or any part thereof as from a specified date, the regulations or such part thereof, as the case may be, shall thereupon become void as from that date but without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done thereunder or to the making of new regulations.
Payment into Consolidated Fund
11.  All moneys collected under the provisions of this Act and the regulations shall be paid into the Consolidated Fund.
12.—(1)  Where the Minister is of the opinion that the circumstances of any particular case so warrant, he may, in his discretion, authorise the refund of any fee or part thereof paid in respect of any licence issued under the provisions of this Act or the regulations.
(2)  All such refunds shall be paid out of the Consolidated Fund.
13.  The Minister may in his discretion, and subject to such conditions as he thinks fit, exempt any person from all or any of the provisions of this Act or the regulations.
Singapore Broadcasting Corporation
14.  This Act shall not apply to the Singapore Broadcasting Corporation established under the Singapore Broadcasting Corporation Act [Cap. 297].