The European Broadcasting Union today urged Hungary’s Prime Minister and President to reconsider massive cuts to the budget of Hungarian Television (Magyar Televisio, MTV) next year. The Hungarian Parliament voted on Tuesday to cut MTV’s funding to around 20 billion forints (€73 million) in 2010, reducing the broadcaster’s budget (after transmission costs have been deducted) by more than 30%.
“Such a severe cut would fundamentally damage public service broadcasting in Hungary and prevent MTV from carrying out its vital function in the service of Hungarian citizens,” EBU President Jean-Paul Philippot and Director General Jean Reveillon wrote in letters sent to Hungarian Prime Minister Gordon Bajnai and President Laszlo Solyom.
“While many EBU Members are facing funding cuts in the wake of the global recession, it is clear that what is envisaged for MTV goes far beyond what may be justified from a financial point of view,” the letter added.
The EBU’s President and Director General reminded Hungary’s leaders of a resolution passed in 2008 by the European Parliament in September that the tasks of public sector broadcasting require long-term funding.
It is known that Hungarian Broadcaster can’t allow to spend money for a lot of projects, including the Eurovision Song Contest because of the adversed plans of the government.