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EBU calls for action to help Bosnian broadcaster

bhrtThe EBU has called for urgent action from the EC to save Bosnia and Herzegovina public broadcaster and EBU member BHRT from impending financial collapse.

In a letter to decision makers in Brussels, EBU director-general Ingrid Deltenre said that lack of funds and debts was endangering the future of the broadcaster.

In the letter, to Johannes Hahn, Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations and Ulrike Lunacek, Vice President of the European Parliament, Deltenre offered the EBU’s support for any EU initiative to ensure that European standards on media are met in the country. Bosnia and Herzegovina this week submitted a formal application to join the EU.

“Because of insufficient and insecure funding, its huge debts and the inability to pay its employees, BHRT is now in total financial collapse. This completely disables its ability to operate and fulfil its role in society,” said Deltenre in her letter.

Public service media reflect the quality of national democratic institutions as much as they contribute to them. BHRT, the national public broadcaster, is the only media in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which has the mission to reach out to the whole population to inform and entertain…and to promote nation building and social cohesion. We are ready to provide professional and legal expertise and to join forces with the European Parliament and the European Commission to support the implementation of EU standards in Bosnia and Herzegovina’s media system. Urgent actions need to be undertaken to ensure the development of sustainable public service media in the country.”