Tony Blair: press regulation is straightforward

Wednesday, 8 May 2013 | 3:35 AM ET
Steve Jennings | WireImage

Former U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair has said that press regulation in the aftermath of the Leveson Inquiry is a "straightforward" matter, as the government delays plans to implement a new Royal Charter.

Speaking to CNBC Meets, Blair was asked whether there had been any positive changes following the phone-hacking scandal and the resulting inquiry.

"I think it's a bit early to tell to be honest," Blair said, "But, you know, it's a very straightforward thing this: it's literally about saying journalism should also have standards. We're expected to have them, lawyers are expected to have them. That's not to say that everyone always meets them, but there should be some."

The new charter was meant to be presented to the Queen for approval on May 15, but on May 3 Downing Street said the date had been pushed back in order for a different charter to be put forward by the newspaper industry.

(Read More: Cherie Blair: Thatcher Taught Tony How to Win)

Blair was a key witness at the Leveson Inquiry last year where he spoke of how parts of the British press pursued his wife, Cherie Blair, in a "sort-of personal vendetta campaign."

Discussing the need for new press regulation and for proper standards in journalism, Blair said, "The vast majority of journalists want that to happen, and do their job and do it perfectly well. I think British journalism - at its best - is the best in the world."

Yet, speaking of journalists who abused their power, he added, "I hope what has happened allows people to at least present the facts objectively, because that's what journalism should be about."

CNBC Meets: Cherie Blair will air on Wednesday 15 May.



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  • Tania Bryer is a guest presenter and executive producer of CNBC Meets. In this series, she profiles some of the world’s most successful business people to find out what makes them tick. Bryer previously worked for BBC and Sky Television.