Earlier in February, Polish President Andrzej Duda signed the budget act for 2022, granting Polish public media a total of two billion zlotys or about €500 million in public funding.
The State Board of Radio Broadcasting and Television (KRRiT), responsible for, among other things, allocating funds for public media, has decided that about €400 million will go to public broadcaster Telewizja Polska (TVP).
In Europe, many public media are partially funded by subscription fees. This amounts to €55 a year in Poland, but many avoid it altogether. The government has thus decided to compensate public media for this gap by granting them a large sum of money every year. From 2016 to February 2021, TVP received almost €1.5 billion.
“If the state cannot collect money from all of the subscribers to fund its public broadcaster, then it is up to the state to compensate for the gaps. It is the state’s responsibility that has finally been done correctly, thanks to the ruling party, ” said TVP’s head Jacek Kurski last year.
TVP, which Reporters Without Borders have called the government’s “mouthpiece”, is often accused by experts and the opposition of spreading government propaganda, as well as radical conservative content and hate speech.
It is also often compared to the propaganda of the former communist regime in Poland. For instance, in 2019, TVP produced a documentary comparing the LGBT+ community to Marxism.
Last year Poland fell to a record low 64th place in the Reporters Without Borders’ World Press Freedom Index. Euractiv