Media Council: over HUF 100 million for regular local and regional television programmes

Published: 7 December 2018

At this week’s meeting, the Media Council of the National Media and Infocommunications Authority (NMHH) awarded a total of HUF 105.3 million for the production of regular local and regional news as well as current affairs and cultural television programmes. The frequency tender process in Budapest will proceed with the content-based examination and invitations to tender for radio media service options in Törökbálint and Göd are open. The Council also imposed fines on service providers in Rádió 1’s network and took decisions to support three film festivals.

The Council decided to support 23 local and regional television programmes

In the third round of this year’s tender for regular news, current affairs and cultural TV programmes announced under the Hungarian Media Patronage programme, the Media Council has awarded a total of HUF 105.3 million to 23 local or regional television stations. Seven media service providers, namely Szombathelyi Televízió, Miskolc Televízió, Veszprém TV, Kecskeméti Televízió, Mezőtúri Városi Televízió, Szolnok TV, and Hegyvidék Televízió in Budapest, will be able to use grants to produce news programmes. In the “current affairs programme” category, eight service providers, namely Globo Televízió in Szerencs, Irány Televízió in Ládbesenyő, Hajdúszoboszlói Városi Televízió, Régió Plusz Televízió in Gödöllő, Centrum TV in Budapest, Sárvári Televízió, Soltvadkerti TV and KiSDuNa TV Dunaharaszti, benefit from grants. Another eight TV channels, including Kapos Televízió, Ózdi Városi Televízió, 7.Tv in Békéscsaba, Gyula Televízió, Danubia Televízió in Tahitótfalu, Körös Televízió in Szarvas, TV Szentendre, and Apostol TV in Budapest, will receive grants to produce cultural programmes.

Radio-related decisions

During the formal examination of the bids submitted for the Budapest 99.5 MHz regional radio frequency, the Council registered both bidders, Zene Rádió Kft. and Média Depo Kft., both of whom submitted the missing document requested previously. The procedure will continue with the content-based examination of the bids. The Media Council adopted and published on its website the draft calls for bids for the community use of two currently unused radio frequencies, local Törökbálint 97.6 MHz and regional Göd 97.3 MHz. The Authority will hold public hearings for both media service options on 4 January.

The Media Council imposed HUF 50,000 fines on radio service providers in Rádió 1’s network, broadcasting on the Győr 103.1 MHz and Heves 93.7 MHz frequencies. During a programming week reviewed in late August and early September, both service provider aired different signature tunes than those agreed upon in their public contracts on many occasions and failed to meet its commitments on own transmission time and the proportion of Hungarian music; in addition, the latter station aired less public-service programmes, programmes dealing with local community and facilitating local everyday life than it committed to in its contract.

The Council approved the content of the Media Service Support and Asset Management Fund’s submission requesting the extension of the transmission time of Kossuth Rádió’s medium-wave broadcast on 540 kHz with a few minutes in order to adopt it to the structure of the radio’s 24-hour programming aired on very high frequency. Until now, Kossuth Radio broadcast on the medium wave between 4:30 AM and 10:30 PM on weekdays and between 5:00 AM and 10:30 PM on weekends; from now on, it will be available between 4:25 AM and 10:31 PM every day, matching the start and end of the programmes concerned.

Festival support

The Media Council decided on supporting three upcoming festivals. As part of the increased cooperation between Hungary and Iran in culture and film over the past year, Hungary has the opportunity to appear at the 11th Tehran International Animation Festival between 3 and 7 March 2019 to present over a hundred years of Hungarian animation, including films produced with funding under the Hungarian Media Patronage programme, and organise an exhibition, with a HUF 3 million contribution towards the related costs from the Media Council. This year as well, the Council offers HUF 1.5 million each for as the prize for the best animated short and the best animated TV series at the 14th Kecskemét Animation Film Festival and the 11th Festival of European Animated Feature Films and TV Films to be held between 19 and 22 June 2019 as one event.