UKRAINE – The 2018 draft of state budget envisages providing only 775 mln UAH (approx. 25 mln EUR) for financing UA: PBC. The sum is around half of the budget defined in the Law on Public Television and Radio Broadcasting of Ukraine.
The management board of UA: PBC regards the possible underfunding as a threat to the freedom of speech. It also sees it as a way of getting the broadcaster under control on the eve of a general election campaign.
EU representatives express their concerns with the possible underfunding of UA: PBC and demand from the Ukrainian government to fulfill its obligation toward UA: PBC.
The EBU was one of the first to express its position concerning under-funding financing of UA: PBC. The statement of the organization says that UA: PBC is the core of recent political reforms in Ukraine. A robust and independent public service broadcaster is a crucial tool in the fight against corruption, the respect of the rule of Law, and important step towards Ukraine’s European integration.
The European Broadcasting Union calls on the Ukrainian Government to ensure appropriate, fair and independent funding for UA: PBC in line with the Ukrainian Law and European standards.
“A sudden drop in its funding levels, would undermine the important process of reform UA: PBC has undertaken in order to operate as sustainable and independent public service media organization,” EBU Director General Noel Curran said.
We should not forget that there are pending two cases: how Ukrainian television will get the 15 million Euros deposited as guarantee and also to deal with the fine of EBU (200,000 Euros) for messing with Eurovision 2017 hosting.