Pakistan Institute of Development Economics

P & R Vol. 2 Issue 9
Interview with Mohammad Malick
Publication Year : 2021

What do you think is the role of PEMRA in media? Do they give proper guidelines regarding the functioning of news and talk shows? Are they sometimes overindulging in the media house business?

PEMRA was supposed to be a regulating authority. Its main purpose was to come up with rules and regulations and monitor Tv channels just like Ofcom in the UK. However, In Pakistan PEMRA is not independent at all, rather it seems like an arm of the executive which seems to function just for the government. I believe that they have a capacity issue as well, but the bigger issue at hand is independence. I have not seen PEMRA contribute positively to media development in Pakistan. Ofcom in the UK has extremely strict policies regarding monitoring and regulations in general and if any news channel deviates from it, that channel is sued. This is an enormous difference between both regulatory authorities. PEMRA on the other hand depends on the government and I do not see it developing as long as it is not independent.