Review of Free to AIR Sporting Events

Review of Designated Events & Designation of Major Events

The Deadline for submissions in connection with the above topic has been extended to 15th August.

 The Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources is inviting  submissions from members of the public and interested parties on the list of designated events which must be provided “Free to Air” on a LIVE or Deferred basis.

The matter of the GAA arrangements where by  SKY ” Pay to View”  now have rights to a certain number of matches in the Hurling and Football Championships was the subject of a lively debate at our recent Annual Parliament Meeting. Now is the time to take this opportunity to have your voice heard on this matter across all sporting events. You can make a submission by email or in writing see details below. Alternatively you can email your views to

The Minister is required to undertake a review of the list of events designated as events of major importance to society for which the right of a qualifying broadcaster (RTE, TV3, & TG4 i.e. free television service with greater than 90 percent coverage) to provide coverage on a live or deferred basis on television services should be permitted in the public interest. Section 173 of the Broadcasting Act 2009 provides that a review is carried out every three years and submissions on the designated events and the possible designation of additional events are sought.

The events currently designated are listed in the Order dated 13 March 2003 S.I. 99 of 2003 and in short are as follows:


  • The Summer Olympics
  • The All-Ireland Senior Inter-County Football & Hurling Finals
  • Ireland’s home and away qualifying games in the European Football Championship & the FIFA World Cup Tournaments
  • Ireland’s games in the European Football Championship Finals Tournament and the FIFA World Cup Finals Tournament
  • The opening games, the semi-finals and final of the European Football Championship Finals and the FIFA World Cup Finals Tournament
  • Ireland’s games in the Rugby World Cup Finals Tournament
  • The Irish Grand National and the Irish Derby
  • The Nations Cup at the Dublin Horse Show

Deferred Events 

  • Ireland’s games in the Six Nations Rugby Football Championship

The closing date for receipt of submissions is 15th August 2014.

Have you say send a Submissions may be provided either by email to or by hard copy to

Maria Owens, Major Events Coverage, Broadcasting Policy Division, Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, 29-31 Adelaide Road, Dublin 2.

If, following the review, the Minister proposes to add to the list of designated events, he will publish a notice of any additional events that he intends to designate and invite comments on the said list.

Freedom of Information

It should be noted that the Department proposes to publish all material submitted on the Department’s website. Respondents should clearly identify material that is confidential and which may not be published. The provisions of the Freedom of Information Acts 1997 to 2003 shall apply.