Northern Ireland

RTÉ - Irish broadcaster cutting 200 jobs in restructuring move

Dee Forbes said RTÉ had to reduce costs Image copyright RTÉ
Image caption RTÉ director general Dee Forbes said the station had to reduce costs

About 200 jobs are to go at Irish broadcaster RTÉ as part of restructuring plans.

The station's director general Dee Forbes told a staff briefing that the jobs will be lost through voluntary retirement and redundancy.

She said the organisation needed to reduce costs.

Speaking on RTÉ's Today with Sean O'Rourke, she said the job cuts would represent around 10% of current staffing levels.

Image copyright RTÉ
Image caption RTÉ has asked for an increase in the licence fee and that process is 'ongoing'

Ms Forbes said RTÉ has lost €100m in revenue since 2008 and that income from licence fees and commercials had dropped.

She estimated that RTÉ had lost €10m (£8.66m) in advertising revenue as a result of Brexit and a curtailment of advertising spend last year.

Ms Forbes said the industry has gone through unprecedented change over the last number of years and RTÉ has to change with it.

The director general said RTÉ had asked for an increase in the licence fee and that process was "ongoing".

She added that she believed the licence fee was incredible value for money and it should be double its current fee.

Image copyright RTÉ
Image caption It is thought the land could be used to build up to 500 housing units subject to planning permission

She told Mr O'Rourke: "We are fighting for survival" and hard choices have to be made."

Earlier on Wednesday, it was announced that RTÉ has put 3.5 hectares (nine acres) of land at its headquarters in Donnybrook in Dublin on sale with a guide price of €75m (£64.97m).

It is thought the land could be used to build up to 500 housing units subject to planning permission.

The money generated from the sale will be used for infrastructure and capital projects.

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