Gobind: RM30m for World Cup broadcast rights only, sponsors will cover other costs

Gobind Singh Deo speaks during a press conference at the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia in Putrajaya June 12, 2018. — Picture by Azinuddin Ghazali
Gobind Singh Deo speaks during a press conference at the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia in Putrajaya June 12, 2018. — Picture by Azinuddin Ghazali

PUTRAJAYA, June 12 ― The RM30 million bill that has been fully sponsored is only to obtain the license broadcasting rights for Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM) to screen World Cup 2018 matches, with the additional incidental costs to be  also paid by sponsors, minister Gobind Singh Deo said today.

Gobind, the Minister of Communications and Multimedia, thanked platinum sponsor Maxis and gold sponsor AirAsia for sponsoring RM18 million and RM12 million respectively to enable the broadcast of World Cup 2018 games over free-to-watch channels TV1 and TV2.

“The RM30 million, that is the figure which reflects the amount of purchase of the rights to air.

“Of course there will be other costs but those will not be substantial. As we go along, there will be other side functions that will arise, we are also thinking of perhaps organising an event for the finals,” he told reporters at the ministry here today.

Gobind said he has asked RTM to provide a list of the total related costs which will include events to “promote and to advance calls for all Malaysians to watch the live telecast on RTM”, but said such additional costs are not a lot and can be covered by sponsorship.

“The sponsors will cover it, there's no problem, I'm not concerned, I'm not worried. The amount we have is enough to cover all costs.

“As I said, there are other people who are currently in negotiations with us, but because the contracts have not been signed, so I am reluctant to mention who they are,” he said, adding that the names will not be disclosed until the deals are finalised and signed.

Those interested to also provide sponsorship however will not be funding amounts as “substantial” as Maxis and AirAsia, he said.

The World Cup 2018 will be held in Russia from June 14 to July 15, where 32 countries will vie for the trophy.

RTM has allocated 400 hours to broadcast 41 out of the 64 matches through the channels TV1 and TV2, with 28 games to be shown live and 13 games to be on a delayed transmission.

As for whether there might be additional matches that RTM will be able to air if more sponsors step forward, Gobind indicated that this would be subject to further negotiations.

“Actually we have an agreement and in that agreement, the cost is mentioned specifically, but at the same time, we are still negotiating if we can get other broadcasts, for example additional broadcasts.

“And this is still under negotiation, so of course the question is whether or not we can renegotiate the contract, we are working on it. But as of now, it remains at RM30 million,” he said.

Gobind said those who wish to provide sponsorship should go directly to RTM which has a department that deals specifically with such negotiations, instead of to his ministry.

“So anyone, whether companies or individuals, if you are prepared to sponsor, please come forward and please get in touch with RTM,” he said.