Astra contests subsidies for DTT

Satellite operator Astra Marketing Ibérica, SES Astra's Spanish subsidiary, has decided to contest the decision of the Spanish government to give €8.72 million to projects extending and completing DTT coverage in the first half of the year.

The satellite operator will take this decision to the tribunals in order for the decision to be halted. Astra considers the decision "goes against the free competition and it lacks technological neutrality such as the European Union establishes in its rules", as Rapid TV News has already reported.

At present there are four operators offering digital TV: the terrestrial one, the satellite, cable and DSL networks (IP). According to this the operator considers Spain's government is giving more importance to the DTT platform against the rest of the platforms of signal distribution.

Spain’s digital-terrestrial platform is basically being operated by telecommunication operator Abertis Telecom, which is in charge of TV signal distribution in the whole country.

Astra justifies its decision by alleging Abertis Telecom has the monopoly of TV signal distribution in Spain.