Report: Orbán abandons gov’t-friendly media

History

Citing several unnamed sources, vs.hu reported today that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán met the leaders of government-frendly media and told them that they will no longer be receiving government advertising contracts as these will instead go exclusively to state-run public media in the future.

According to the report, Orbán personally addressed the following personnel: Gábor Borókai (CEO of Heti Válasz), Gábor Liszkay and Gábor Élő (editors-in-chief for Magyar Nemzet and mno.hu), and András Bencsik (leader of Demokrata).

The vs.hu report says Orbán told the media leaders, that the Hungarian government considers public media as the main channel for providing information, and the privately owned government-friendly media will not receive the support of government advertisements anymore.

According to a statement released on January 6 by the Hungarian Media Authority (MTVA), Hungarian state-owned television channels are facing reorganization and consolidation of their management by March 15. Following the reorganization, the new channels would be as follows: M1, Duna TV, Petőfi TV and M4 Sport.

In line with the legislation approved by Parliament at the end of last year, one single company, called the Duna Médiaszolgáltató Zrt., will be responsible for controlling all public television in Hungary. Up until now this control was divided between MTV Zrt and Duna TV Zrt.

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