the world digest


Newman tops ABC

SYDNEY — Australian Stock Exchange chairman Maurice Newman has been appointed chairman of the Australian Broadcasting Corp., replacing Donald McDonald, who retires this month after 10 years at the helm of the public broadcaster. Newman, 68, whose appointment was announced Thursday by communications minister Helen Coonan, served as a director of the broadcaster from 2000-04 but quit in protest over boardroom leaks and concerns about funding levels. The ABC's big-gest challenges will come as the broadcaster adapts to new digital technologies, Newman said at a press conference.

EC, Hungary square off

BRUSSELS —The European Commission on Thursday said it will take Hungary to the European Union's highest court for failing to scrap restrictions on cable television services. The EC said the government has failed to abolish the part of the Hungarian Media Act that limits each cable operator to a maximum subscriber base of just one-third of the Hungarian population. The EC contends that consolidation will foster investment and the provision of better broadband services by allowing cable TV operators to compete with dominant telecom player Magyar Telekom.

Envoy adds theaters

Envoy Media Partners, the international entertainment investment company headed by Ted Shugrue, reported Thursday that MegaStar Media JV Vietnam, of which it is a majority shareholder, had obtained licenses to operate three more movie complexes in Vietman. MegaStar Cineplex of Vietnam, the joint-venture exhibition division, now has permits to build and operate five megaplexes in the country. The first, Vincon Tower 8-plex in Hanoi, has been operating since May.