February 29, 2012: AFP's public interest mission is written into its statutes

AFP : "The Parliament on Wednesday cast a final vote that explicitly writes AFP's public interest missions into its statutes in order to defuse a conflict with the European Union." News, reactions

Translated extracts from AFP wire story

"Passed as part of an omnibus bill sponsored by the MP Jean-Luc Warsmann on the simplification of legal provisions for companies, the amendment adds the following language to Article 13 of AFP's 1957 statutes: "financial compensation from the state for the net costs incurred by the carrying-out of its general interest missions as those missions are laid down in Articles 1 and 2"".

.../...

"The wording chosen resulted from a consensus between the French government, AFP's management and the AFP trade unions. The amendment aims to reply to demands made by the European Commission as a result of a complaint lodged by the German news agency DAPD, which accuses AFP of receiving aid from the government."

Read the full AFP wire story (in French only) on "L'Express" web site

The New Wording of Article 13 (the change is shown in bold type)

"Agence France Presse's resources comprise the income it gains from the sale of documents and news services to its customers, financial compensation from the state for the net costs incurred by the carrying-out of its general interest missions as those missions are laid down in Articles 1 and 2 and revenue from its assets.

"The conditions under which it sells to public state services are laid down in an agreement between the state and Agence France-Presse; the said agreement sets the number and price of the subscriptions taken out by the services in question, on the basis of the rates applied to French press companies.

"The agreement may be revised in the event of changes in the conversion rate applicable to international telex and radiotelegraphy taxes."

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