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Petition puts pressure on radio and TV fees

A petition has been handed in to federal authorities calling for a massive reduction in the annual licence fee for radio and television.

Campaigners, led by a rightwing Swiss People’s Party parliamentarian, said they collected more than 140,000 signatures, mostly online.

The non-binding petition aims to put pressure on parliament and the government to cut the licence fee to SFr200 ($226) from SFr462.

They argue that the publicly-owned Swiss Broadcasting Corporation, which includes, produces too many programmes and is too powerful for private competitors.

The petitioners are also opposed to a decision by parliament to make the payment of a licence fee mandatory for every household or company, regardless whether they use radio and television.

Parliament says a fee is justified because many people use the internet or mobile phones to watch TV or listen to radio. and agencies