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Channel 4 privatisation ‘should not go ahead’ says Donelan

Official announcement is expected to be made by the end of the week

The UK’s culture secretary Michelle Donelan has written to prime minister Rishi Sunak stating that the plan to sell of broadcaster Channel 4 should be scrapped.

In a letter to Rishi Sunak shared by Global’s Lewis Goodall on Twitter, Donelan states she has “concluded that pursuing a sale at this point is not the right decision and there are better ways to secure C4C’s (Channel 4 Corporation) sustainability and that of the independent production sector”.

She added that the broadcaster’s role in supporting the independent production sector “would be very disrupted by a sale at a time when growth and economic stability are our priorities”.

It is expected the government will make the official announcement by the end of the week.

In September culture secretary Michelle Donelan, who retained her position in Sunak’s cabinet, said Liz Truss’s government was re-examining the business case for selling off Channel 4.

Former culture secretary Nadine Dorries confirmed the then government wanted to sell off the broadcaster in April, claiming that “government ownership is holding Channel 4 back from competing against streaming giants like Netflix and Amazon”.

In November it was revealed UK government had reportedly spent around £2 million on its plan to privatise Channel 4.