LTV chief criticises new Latvian retransmission rules

New amendments to Latvia’s media law have been criticised as penalising public broadcaster LTV by the latter’s director-general Edgar Kots.

Kots said that the amendments, adopted yesterday by the Latvian parliament, the Saeima, would weaken the competitiveness of LTV and benefit Modern Times Group, owner of its commercial rival.

The amendments will see the end of compulsory retransmission rules for all but the public broadcast channels, meaning that commercial broadcasters will be able to secure retransmission fees for distribution on cable networks.

Hitherto commercial channels have been offered to end users for free and broadcasters have paid for retransmission.