Home Page
 
news 19 Mar 13

Serbian Media Fear Doom if State Funds Go

Serbia's draft law on public information, envisioning state withdrawal from media ownership, continues to draw opposition from state-owned media, which fear it will lead to their closure.

Bojana Barlovac
BIRN
Belgrade

Bratislav Petkovic, the Minister for Culture and Media, said that the draft law, enabling the state to withdraw from the media ownership, would not have negative consequences.

“This will not mean any lack of state responsibility towards realization of the public interest in the area of public information,” Petkovic told a debate in Belgrade on Tuesday.

Under the terms of the draft, the state will in future finance the media only through projects staged under equal and transparent conditions. Adoption of the law is part of the Serbian government's media strategy, adopted in September 2011.

Vincent Degert, head of the EU Delegation to Serbia, welcomed the move, saying that direct budget subsidies to the state media were a hindrance to free competition and equality in the market.

However, local media across Serbia voiced disagreements with the proposal. They fear the law will lead to their closure, as many depend on state funding for income.

Aleksandar Timofejev, director of the City of Belgrade-owned broadcaster Studio B, strongly criticized the draft.

"Studio B will be killed off if the state withdraws from its ownership," he told the debate.

Representatives from other state-owned local media including those from Nis, Subotica, Jagodina, agreed, saying they faced the same fate.

Last Thursday, a public debate on the draft law in Nis ended in uproar.

The public debate on the law ends on March 22.

Talk about it!

blog comments powered by Disqus

Related Headlines:

moldovan-parliament-asks-russian-troops-to-leave-transnistria-07-21-2017
21 Jul 17

Moldova Asks Russian Troops to Quit Transnistria

Moldova's parliament has passed a declaration asking Russian troops to leave Transnistria, a day before Russian Deputy PM Dmitry Rogozin’s planned visit to the breakaway region.  

21 Jul 17

Kosovars Warned About Using First Bitcoin ATM

20 Jul 17

The Power of Time

Premium Selection

serbia-in-two-minds-over-new-imf-deal-07-17-2017
20 Jul 17

Serbia in Two Minds Over New IMF Deal

With the economy in relatively good shape, a question mark hangs over whether Serbia needs a fresh arrangement with the Fund.

kosovo-war-court-president-promises-impartial-justice-07-19-2017
20 Jul 17

Kosovo War Court President Promises Impartial Justice

The president of the Kosovo Specialist Chambers, Ekaterina Trendafilova, told BIRN the new court has no ethnic bias, will protect its witnesses from intimidation and deliver justice impartially and independently.

19 Jul 17

New Migrants Face Old Terrors on Balkan Route