TV Licence Likely To Be Scrapped Within 10 Years, Says Matt Hancock

13 June 2019, 08:12

Matt Hancock told LBC he doesn't believe the TV Licence will exist within 10 years.

Earlier this week, the BBC made the decision to withdraw free TV Licences from over-75s and the Tory leadership candidate labelled it "a mistake".

But when Iain Dale pressed him on what the future of BBC funding will be, the former Culture Secretary suggested that they are going to have to adapt to the modern era.

He told LBC: "I think it's a mistake and they should think again. The BBC is well-funded and I think they should live within their means.

"But there's a much bigger question about how a national broadcaster is funded in the future. The idea of the technology of a TV is becoming redundant. People watch the BBC on their phones, their laptops. TVs are essentially the same thing as a computer in a different part of the room."

Matt Hancock expects the TV Licence to be scrapped within 10 years
Matt Hancock expects the TV Licence to be scrapped within 10 years. Picture: PA / LBC

When Iain questioned how Mr Hancock would fund the BBC in the era of Netflix, he responded: "We have a funding agreement for the next 10 years which was struck two years ago, so there's about eight years to run.

"I would predict that over the next eight years, the idea that the TV is a separate box to your computer will almost completely disappear for many households. Then the question 'Do you have a TV?' will become a weird question to ask.

"So then how do you have a public broadcaster?"

He then suggested that other funding options open to the BBC are taxation and subscription.

Watch his full answer at the top of the page.