The head of Iran’s Seda va Sima has called on the Rohani administration to increase the national broadcaster’s budget.

Seda va Sima building

Seda va Sima building

The Fars news agency reports that Isfahan MPs met with Mohammad Sarafraz on Wednesday August 19. Sarafraz told the MPs that the national broadcasting service’s budget is about one trillion toumans which does not even cover employee wages.

Seda va Sima used to receive 1.5 trillion toumans but it has gradually decreased to 932 billion toumans, requiring the broadcaster to generate 890 billion toumans in revenue.

Sarafraz said earning revenue through advertising could result in “consumerism or questions about the advertisement of foreign products”. He stressed that if Seda va Sima’s budget is provided by the government, the service will remain free of such problems.

He added that Seda va Sima needed more money to counter U.S. media programming. He referred to the production of religious-themed TV series such as the Life of Moses and Salman, which have been shelved due to a lack of budget.