ICASA plans World Cup on Free to Air

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) has announced a number of recommendations regarding access to televised high-profile sporting events, which are only available via to pay-TV subscribers.

South African broadcaster MultiChoice currently holds a vast array of sports rights across its Super Sports channels, including soccer, rugby union and cricket, which are carried by its DStv satellite service.

As well as the Fifa World Cup, they include the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon), Summer Olympic Games, Cricket World Cup, T20 Cricket World Cup, Commonwealth Games, South African netball, as well as international boxing and athletics.

Amended regulations would also require a minimum of South Africa’s lesser-viewed sports to be broadcast on both free-to-air and subscription-based channels, according to a report by South African technology news outlet MyBroadband. 

They could include golf, tennis, martial arts, basketball, squash, and motor sport. Non-exclusive rights to rugby union competitions including Super Rugby and the Currie Cup, as well as the Premier League, English soccer’s top flight, and the COSAFA Cup regional international soccer tournament remain available to subscription-based broadcasters.