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Disney cable channels to stop broadcasting in Taiwan

All 11 Walt Disney Co Ltd-operated channels in Taiwan are to cease services by the end of this year, the National Communications Commission (NCC) said after confirming that it received documentation covering cessation of broadcasting services yesterday.

National Geographic International, National Geographic Wild and Baby TV are to stop broadcasting by the end of September, while National Geographic Local, Star Channel Chinese, Star Channel Movies, Star Movies Gold, Star World, Star Movies Entertainment, Star Movies HD, Star Chinese Movies HD and Star Movies Gold are to stop broadcasting by the end of the year, the NCC said.

The 11 channels are owned by two companies — National Geographic Taiwan and Disney Pacific Group Ltd Taiwan branch — both of which are subsidiaries of Walt Disney Co.

A source in the industry, commenting on condition of anonymity, said that control of the paid channels would be turned over to the NCC.

It would not be easy to find replacements for the channels, the source said.

Article 21 of the Satellite Broadcasting Act (衛星廣播電視法) stipulates that “when a domestic or foreign satellite broadcasting business plans to suspend or terminate the operations of one or all the channels, the said business or its branch office or agent shall submit a written report to the regulatory agency three months in advance and notify its subscribers one month in advance.”

Separately, Disney’s public relations department in a statement confirmed that it was terminating the 11 channels.

Its over-the-top media services, cinema services and content sale contracts would continue to operate as usual, the department said.

The company told the Central News Agency that it could not comment on the number of people who would lose their jobs over the decision.

The Taipei Department of Labor said it had not received any complaints or reports that the company was paying employees severance.

The Taipei City Government would issue a notice to the company at least 60 days before the end of the year reminding it that companies must give it notice if they intend to terminate employment contracts en masse. Taipei Times

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