Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment

Public Service Broadcasting: Discussion (Resumed).

5:00 pm

Ms Breda O'Keeffe:

On presenter's fees, it has been well publicised that every year we disclose the remuneration of our top talent presenters. We made a public commitment a number of years ago to reduce the fees paid to our top talent. We recognised that they were too high. In the first instance, there is great coverage of this issue, but top talent fees represent less than 1% of our operating costs. We have many other issues about which to be worried. Earlier this year we released figures that showed that top talent fees were more than 40% lower than in 2008. That exceeds the public commitment we made. We operate in a commercial environment and generate commercial revenue and the talents of our presenters help us to deliver commercial revenue which is very important to us. If one were to look at a top ten talents across Ireland, we reckon five of them would not be at RTE but with other commercial broadcasters. We are operating in a competitive environment.