Remarks made by ABC managing director, Mark Scott, that internal television production at ABC Tasmania is not guaranteed is a cause for great concern, the Australian Greens said today.

The ABC is required under its charter to run a national organisation with strong local content, but this suggests that the ABC is continuing to centralise its operations in Melbourne and Sydney at the expense of the regions.

“Tasmania is a vibrant place with so many stories to tell and so many talented people to tell those stories,” Australian Greens Deputy Leader, Senator Christine Milne, said.

“The ABC is designed to take those stories to a wide audience, but it needs to be properly resourced to help it do so.

“Tasmanians must tell Mr Scott that we not only support greater funding for the ABC but that we want local production maintained

“In Hobart, we have a great pool of talented, highly skilled and trained TV production staff and it would be wrong if they had to go to the mainland or overseas to get work when the facilities exist here to do the job.

“Not only would such a decision be a blow to TV but the local film industry also depends on the maintenance of skilled production capacity and any move to end internal TV production in Tasmania would undermine growth in Tasmania’s appeal as a film location.

“In an age where film and television production capacity will struggle to keep up with demands for additional content in the new media field, it is short sighted to say that internal television production at ABC Tasmania is not guaranteed.”