HONGKONG'S two commercial television stations TVB and ATV are set to achieve total savings of about $400 million in government royalties over the next 10 years as a result of the introduction of pay-TV. While revenue from royalties to be paid by the cable licensee would be dependent on its subscription and advertising income, the reduction in such payments from ATV and TVB was roughly estimated to be about $400 million, at 1991 prices, for the period 1993-2002, the Executive Council was told this week. Exco endorsed the Television (Amendment) Bill 1993 which will be gazetted today. Royalties aside, the proposed amendments to the television legislation also envisage greater restrictions on the Government's powers to ban programmes. Noting the need for the administration to hold reserve powers to prohibit programmes in well-defined situations, the bill proposes that any such prohibition should be made by the Governor-in-Council, as recommended by the Broadcasting Authority, rather than the authority itself. It is understood the Attorney-General's Chambers also concedes that the existing criterion for banning programmes under the term for ''the peace and good order of Hongkong'', was too loose to be valid. The bill also states that any person broadcasting prohibited material will be liable on conviction to heavy penalties because of the likely serious ramifications. The bill will provide for the proceedings of the authority to be more open to the public when it is considering possible revocation of a licence under new, more clearly defined, circumstances. According to the amendment bill, it allows the first pay-TV licensee, likely to be Wharf Holdings, to provide telecommunication services using a subscription network subject to a licence being obtained under the Telecommunication Ordinance. It allows a licensee, where it has obtained the approval of the Broadcasting Authority, to own or control shares in any local or overseas company directly connected with broadcasting (including satellite television and sound broadcasting) without the existing requirement that the licensee should have a controlling interest in those companies. The only restriction as regards investment in such companies will be on a licensee's holdings in a local commercial television broadcasting licensee (ATV and TVB), a local satellite television licensee (Hutchvision Hongkong Limited), and a local sound broadcasting licensee (Metro Broadcast and Commercial Radio), where the licensee may in aggregate own or control no more than 15 per cent of the share capital. The bill allows a licensee to hold or acquire any level of shares in a company that is licensed to provide telecommunication services using a subscription television network. To monitor and regulate the first pay-TV licensee, the Television and Entertainment Licensing Authority, the Post Office and the Legal Department will progressively require 16 extra staff at a total annual cost of $5.8 million in 1993-94, rising to $7.2 million by 1996-97.