A study on Cost of Pay-TV Piracy in APAC region, carried out by Cable and Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia (CASBAA) and StanChart Bank, Hong Kong, has revealed alarming figures regarding pay-TV piracy. India alone has suffered losses of $685 million in revenues, even as the number of illegal subscriptions across Asia Pacific has risen by 20 per cent in 2006 to 5.2 million connections.
As per the study, the cost of pay-TV piracy in the Asia Pacific region has increased from $1.06 billion in 2005 to $1.13 billion in 2006. The grey market deficit in India has grown from $632 million in 2005 to $667 million in 2006 due to under-reporting by last mile cable operators. The study, which highlights the impact of pay-TV signal theft and unlicensed pay-TV operators on regional economies amid new technological developments, has pointed out that the piracy situation in India, Hong Kong and Vietnam continues to worsen.
Lee Beasley, Head of Media and Entertainment, Standard Chartered, said, “Pay-TV piracy should raise an alarm not only in the pay-TV industry, but also for a range of Asian governments. Having said that, we believe the pay-TV market still presents huge potential for growth.”
According to Simon Twiston Davies, CEO, CASBAA, “Pay-TV piracy is possibly the number one issue facing the entire industry in the Asia Pacific. Meanwhile, CASBAA will continue to work with the industry, regulators and the community at large to improve the situation.”
Singapore is the only market covered by the Report that brings good news to the industry this year. As a result of the ongoing digitisation of the cable network, the number of pirated pay-TV subscriptions remains low. The piracy issue appears to be under control, with a 15.8 per cent decline in pay-TV piracy cost.
Standard Chartered and CASBAA will release the full results of the study on October 25 at the CASBAA Convention 2006, being held in Hong Kong. The CASBAA Convention 2006 is Asia’s premier broadcasting event. Tagged ‘From Bandwidth to Brandwidth’, the CASBAA Convention 2006, to be held from October 24-27, is poised to shed light on using advancements in digital technologies to maximise the value of newly-available communications bandwidth for sophisticated brand development, innovative marketing and premium content.