RS threatens to stop live broadcast of FIFA World Cup matches

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BANGKOK, 11 June 2014 – The Supreme Administrative Court is set to finalize its verdict today at 1PM on whether all World Cup 2014 matches are required to be televised live across free TV channels. 

RS International Broadcasting and Sport Management, the exclusive rights holder for the FIFA World Cup, is fighting a court case with the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) on whether it should allow live broadcast of the World Cup across all free TV channels.

Earlier, RS won the case in the Central Administrative Court and has decided to only televise 22 matches of the World Cup on free TV. The rest of the matches had to be purchased via the PSI 02 HD box. However, the NBTC appealed against the court’s ruling by stating that all Thais must have a chance to watch the World Cup matches as they used to.

Mr. Wiboon Kammarabutra, the unaffiliated justice of the case, appealed that the Supreme Administrative Court should overturn the verdict of the Central Administrative Court. He stated that RS must uphold the interests of the public rather than its own interests.

RS is also allowed to claim any monetary damages resulting from the “must-have” rule to protect their rights as the broadcast license holder.

However, RS affirmed that it would not do anything in violation of FIFA regulations and threatened to entirely stop broadcasting all matches on the World Cup if the Supreme Administrative Court ruled in favor of the NBTC. The Court is set to rule on the case today at 1PM.