MADRID: The total amount of advertising and promotional material shown on television in Spain could rise to 29 minutes per hour of broadcasting, if proposals currently under consideration in the country receive formal approval.

As previously reported, the Spanish government has stated its intention to reduce the number of ads aired on the two public television channels from the current level of ten minutes an hour.

By contrast, the Audiovisual General Law, which is being discussed in the country's Parliament at present, could almost double the amount of time devoted to commercial communications on purely advertiser-funded stations from the existing limit of 12 minutes an hour.

Alongside adding an extra 12 minutes for "telepromotions", the bill would retain the current five minutes allotted to "self-promotion", taking the total to 29 minutes in all.

In response, a wide variety of consumer and advertising industry associations have joined forces to oppose these suggested measures, arguing the current restrictions should remain in place.

More specifically, they suggest the revised rules would be detrimental to both brands and consumers, as well contravening the European Directive on Advertising.

Spain has been one of the hardest hit advertising markets since the onset of the financial crisis, with Warc's latest Consensus Forecast predicting a decline in revenues of some 20% in the European nation over the course this year as a whole.
Telecinco, the Spanish broadcaster, posted a 40% drop in ad revenues during the first nine months of 2009, with Antena 3, one of its major rivals, also seeing totals slide by 41% during this period.

Data sourced from RapidTV, Reuters; additional content by Warc staff