The SNP has called for an extra £100 million a year of BBC spending in Scotland – more than the broadcaster spends across the entire Midlands.
The party’s manifesto, launched on Monday, wants to fund more production by recouping a greater share of the money licence fee-payers north of the border put into the BBC.
Latest data shows the BBC spends £190 million a year in Scotland – 61.4 per cent of the £309 million a year raised through licence fees.
Regarding BBC investment, the SNP manifesto states: “This would provide a boost of over £100 million, which we believe will provide important new opportunities for production companies and the creative sector in Scotland.”
The demands come at a key time for the BBC, which negotiations over the next 10-year charter set to begin after the General Election.
The SNP’s demands would see the vast majority of its licence fee investment returned.
Meanwhile, the Post is calling for 50 per cent of the funding raised through Midland licence fees to be returned.
That would mean an extra £400 million a year investment by the broadcaster into this region.
The SNP also wants “responsibility for broadcasting” to be devolved to the Scottish government.
Mike Bradley, chair of the Campaign for Broadcasting Midlands, said the SNP demands show the need for a shake-up in how the BBC spends the £3.7 billion a year it gets from licence fees.
He said the BBC already re-invests more than half of the money raised there – which is all we are calling for in the Midlands.
He said: “This just shows that something needs to be done about how the BBC spends its money across the country.
“Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland already get more than 50 per cent of what they put into the BBC, which is what we are asking for.
“If the BBC is going to increase spending in Scotland to more like 90 per cent that can’t come at the cost of the Midlands – it is still in London where the BBC spends most of its money.”
WHERE THE BBC SPENDS ITS MONEY
|BBC region||Licence fee spend||BBC investment||Spend per licence fee-payer|
Source: Campaign for Regional Broadcasting Midlands, based on 2014 expenditure