The Malta Independent 3 June 2020, Wednesday

24,000 hours of Maltese television history to be digitized

Jeremy Micallef Wednesday, 22 May 2019, 13:27 Last update: about 2 years ago

A project co-financed by the European Union (EU) will have 24,000 hours of Maltese television history digitized to preserve the visual heritage of the country.

With a total investment of €4.8 million, and after discussion on exploring the opportunities starting in 2014, the Government accepted the project and work started in collaboration with the various related ministries.


From the €4.8 million – €3.3 million are to be funded by the EU, €1.7 million from national funds, and €900,000 will be coming from PBS themselves.

The five steps to starting the process, as explained by PBS Chairman Tonio Portughese, began with the identifying of the challenge and studying its feasibility; the approval from the Government as a PBS shareholder; acquiring the necessary technology to do so; indexing the meta data; and then beginning the process of digitization.

Portughese said that this will ensure that public broadcasting recordings are preserved for generations to come.

Speaking at the press conference, Minister for Culture Owen Bonnici applauded the project for “giving back the public their memories”, and “giving the public their memories back”.

The Justice Minister and Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds Aaron Farrugia both pointed out that this project would have been difficult to accomplish without the funds available from the EU.

Farrugia also noted that we are now closing in on the end of the “7-year chapter of EU funds”, and plans are being made for the upcoming budget that will serve till the year 2027.

“There is a need to look at direct funds – funds that we compete against other countries to get rather than each other.”

He also announced that an office will be opening in the coming months to work directly on obtaining such funds from the EU.

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