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The Mexican government is sending "positive signals" to supporters of community radio in the country, saying social groups and communities should be given equal opportunities to access public airwaves, reports the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC).

The government has upheld its pledge not to close community radio stations until negotiations between federal authorities and community broadcasters over licensing have been resolved, AMARC says.

The Interior Minister, Santiago Creel, has also expressed a willingness to consider legal recognition for community radio. In a recent address to broadcasting entrepreneurs, he said social groups and communities "have the right to use, within legal limits, the frequencies and technologies that are available to communicate and resolve their specific needs with regards to subsistence and development."

AMARC recently visited Mexico to help steer discussions between federal authorities and local community radio stations over the granting of operating licences.

The IFEX member says that amidst growing media concentration in the country, there are demands to give community radio legal recognition and to re-examine how radio frequencies are assigned in the country. Meanwhile, a senate committee is drafting recommendations for reforming the Federal Radio and Television Law and is expected to issue a report by the end of this year.


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