Peruvian Transport and Communications Ministry (MTC) has recently released a decree through which the analog blackout’s implementation schedule plan in the country is modified. As reported on various specialized websites, the decision is related to the Coronavirus pandemic impact. Cities affected by the measure are Ayacucho; Chimbote; Ica; Iquitos; Juliaca; Pucallpa; Puno and Tacna, which make up the so-called ‘Territory N ° 3’ of the DTT migration plan in the country.
Analog blackout’s implementation plan in Peru, called ‘Plan Maestro’, divides the country into five groups of cities, in which a date was established from which analog and digital TV channels should coexist, as well as a term to implement the total DTT migration According to the already mentioned plan, territory N ° 1, made up of the cities of Lima and Callao, must fully implement the DTT migration in Q4 2021. Territory N° 2, which groups the cities of Arequipa, Cusco, Trujillo, Chiclayo, Piura and Huancayo, must implement the analog blackout in 100% in Q4 2022.
According to the modifications established in the decree, territory N° 3 must start broadcasting digital TV channels in Q4 2021, to complete the transition to DTT in Q4 2023. Territory N° 4 gathers cities like Abancay; Cajamarca; Chachapoyas; Huancavelica; Huanuco; Puerto Maldonado; Moquegua; Cerro de Pasco; Moyobamba and Tumbes; and should start combining analog and digital TV channels in Q1 2022; to complete the analog blackout in Q4 2025. Territory N° 5, made up of cities not included in the previous territories, should start mixing analog to digital channels in Q1 2024; to complete de DTT migration in Q4 2027.
‘Measures adopted to control Covid-19’s spread had a negative impact on broadcasters that have been implementing the Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) in Peru, because they affected their economy; they initially prevented and later made it difficult to import equipment with digital technology, as well as initially making it impossible to move and install the stations that allow channels to be broadcasted with digital technology’, the decree states. In addition, the MTC reported that broadcasters operating in ‘Territory N° 3’ had had problems even before the beginning of the pandemic period. According to the decree, ‘on November 30th, 2020, the deadline for broadcasting service holders to notify the MTC about the beginning of broadcasts with digital technology (DTT) expired. However, none of them has filled this requirement’.
According to several specialized websites in Peru, the original schedule to implement the analog blackout had already been modified by two previous decrees issued by the MTC.