Monday night, newspapers across Japan reported that Fuji Television‘s parent company, Fuji Media Holdings, was being investigated for violating the Japanese Broadcasting Law.
According to several news reports, between 2012 and 2014 – long after their license had already been granted – foreign ownership of Fuji MH was higher than 20% for this period of time. According to broadcasting law, the ratio of voting rights held by foreign corporations or holders cannot exceed 20%.
While the company realized that they were in breach of regulations, by the time the calculations were finalized the ratio of voting rights held by foreigners fell under 20% and they chose to not disclose the breach to the Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.
Normally, a breach would mean a revocation of the broadcast license, much like what happened to Tohokushinsha Film Corp earlier this year. However, there are provisions within the law that allow MIC to avoid such drastic penalties, so it remains to be seen whether or not similar punishments will be handed out to Fuji TV.