Where does your TV Licence go?

How much does the BBC spend on each channel - and is it going up or down?

What does the BBC spend on its key channels? We have the latest figures from the latest annual report.

The report shows that total BBC turnover topped £5bn for the first time last year, with revenues reaching £5.09bn in the year to 31 March 2012, up from £4.99bn. Of this £3.6bn came from the licence fee, with 25.7m households due to pay the £145.50 compulsory annual levy.

A standard colour TV Licence costs £145.50 – the equivalent of £12.13 per month or just under 40p per day.

The fee you pay provides a wide range of TV, radio and online content, as well as developing new ways to deliver it to you. In addition to funding BBC programmes and services, a proportion of the licence fee contributes to the costs of rolling out broadband to the UK population and funding Welsh Language TV channel S4C and local TV channels. This was agreed with the government as part of the 2010 licence fee settlement.

The licence fee allows the BBC’s UK services to remain free of advertisements and independent of shareholder and political interest.

We aim to collect the fee efficiently and fairly in order to deliver value for money for licence fee payers. In 1991 collection costs came to 6.2% of the total fee collected. By 2013/14 we had reduced this to 2.7%, allowing more money to go towards new content and services. Find out how the BBC spends the licence fee.

The Government has frozen the licence fee at its 2010 level of £145.50 until 31 March 2017, three months after the current BBC Charter period ends.

How is TV Licensing funded and what is the cost of collecting the TV Licence fee?

The revenue source for TV Licensing is the TV Licence fee settlement by the Government to the BBC. More information on this is contained in the BBC Annual Report and Accounts.

The TV Licensing Costs of Collection chart, below, sets out the total licence fee revenue collected and collection costs over the last five years.

Section 365 of the Communications Act 2003 requires the BBC to pay all licence fee revenue it collects (via TV Licensing), less any sums required for making refunds, into the Government’s Consolidated Fund. TV Licensing doesn’t retain any of the licence fee revenue it collects; all monies are passed to the Government, and then on to the BBC, less a small administration fee paid to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport may retain a proportion of the licence fee revenue for other purposes (refer to the BBC’s Royal Charter and Agreement with Secretary of State).

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