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Posted On: 15 July 2020 09:02 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:22 pm

beIN MEDIA GROUP criticizes Saudi General Authority for Competition's statement

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beIN MEDIA GROUP criticized the recent statement issued by the General Authority for Competition in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which purports to permanently terminate the license to broadcast beIN in Saudi Arabia.

In a statement on Tuesday, beIN MEDIA GROUP said, "We note the latest pronouncement by the Saudi General Authority for Competition purporting to "permanently terminate" beIN's license to broadcast in Saudi Arabia. This decision was arrived at through sham legal proceedings that repeatedly violated beIN's due process rights at every turn and the decision itself is not only contrary to international law but also the most basic principles of competition law. The decision is nonsensical on every single level, banning beIN for packaging its rights in the standard way that sports and entertainment broadcasters all around the world do, and indeed as other broadcasters active in the Saudi market also do. Moreover, the very idea that permanently banning a leading competitor from a market could in any way promote competition is plainly absurd."

"We would also question - as we have for 3 years - how Saudi citizens can watch Premier League matches legally in Saudi Arabia with this "permanent" ban on the Premier League's licensed broadcaster. Or indeed how Saudi citizens can legally watch most major international sport, and how this fits into Saudi Arabia's 2030 Vision."

The statement added, "We also note that Saudi Arabia's state-sponsored pirate channel, beoutQ, bundled rights and removed competition for nearly 3 years; yet the only action the Saudi authorities have taken is to deliberately block FIFA, UEFA, the Premier League and others from taking legal action nine times - in complete breach of WTO rules. Saudi Arabia's relentless failure to pay any heed to the rule of law or international norms is only harming sports fans in Saudi, and sports organizations all around the world."

Source: Qatar News Agency