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The BBC has agreed to speak to the government about the use of any surplus from the licence fee following the digital TV switchover.

Sir Michael Lyons, Chairman of the BBC Trust, announced the plan for talks yesterday (May 19th) during a speech to the Royal Television Society.

He explained that the broadcaster has agreed to discuss the possibility of using any leftover money from the fee to help fund Digital Britain, the Guardian reports.

Due to be implemented by 2012, the plan is set to provide the UK with universal broadband access when completed.

However, Sir Michael stressed that if there is a licence fee surplus, the BBC wants as much of it as possible to be used for public purposes.

"Agreeing to these discussions does not mean we are signing a blank cheque, or agreeing to any more general use of the licence fee to pay for things that don't fall within the BBC's public purposes as set out in the charter," he was quoted as saying.

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