The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has announced plans to significantly increase its domestic music quota on radio in the lead-up to the 2010 FIFA soccer World Cup.

Speaking on day one of African music business conference Moshito, SABC's head of strategy Sipho Sithole said that the national broadcaster was aiming for 70% domestic repertoire on its radio stations by 2010.

"Starting in 2008, we will be broadcasting at 60% local content, moving through to 65% next year," Sithole confirmed.

This quota applies to SABC's 13 public broadcasting service (PBS) stations. Sithole added that those stations broadcasting in indigenous languages would be compelled to play 40% of their music in the language spoken in the geographical area they serve.

As far as the public commercial service (PCS) stations are concerned, Sithole said that the quota for domestic repertoire would be set at 35% in 2008, 40% in 2009 and 45% in 2010. These include Johannesburg-based national stations Metro FM and 5FM.

The current quotas imposed by the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA), the regulator for South African communications, are far lower those the SABC is now implementing. A presentation at the Moshito session by ICASA manager Mamodupi Kgatshe confirmed that PBS stations were required to play 40% South African music while PCS networks have to play 25%.

Sithole also used his platform to announce a three-year media partnership with Moshito.

"We currently have 18 radio stations broadcasting from Moshito which shows you how seriously we are taking our support of the South African music industry," he said.

Moshito, now in its fifth year, claims to be Africa's premier music event. This year's installment includes forums on public broadcast of performance royalties, digital rights management (DRM), sampling and music marketing strategy for the 2010 World Cup. The number of international speakers has also grown this year, thanks largely to a new relationship with world music confab WOMEX.