On 16 June, parliament approved the draft law “On Amendments to the Law of Ukraine ‘On Television and Radio Broadcasting’ concerning the share of songs in the state language on musical radio programs and broadcasts” (draft law No. 3822d, by Viktoria Syumar, Andriy Parubiy, Olha Chervakova, Yuriy Pavlenko, Vladyslav Sevryukov, and others). The draft law was designed by the working group of the Committee on Freedom of Speech and Information in the Verkhovna Rada based on two alternative draft laws – 3822 and 3822-1, which were earlier returned to parliament for revisions. The working group also included Center for Democracy and Rule of Law lawyer Igor Rozkladaj and put forth proposals such as:
- giving preference to radio organizations that are ready to “exceed” legislative quotas and to broadcast more Ukrainian songs than required by law;
- the gradual introduction of quotas (from 25% to 35%), and
- exclusion of provisions from the original bill concerning television production, which has been regulated separately.
The approval by the deputies of this law provides for a 35% quota for songs in Ukrainian on the radio during the periods from 7:00 to 14:00 and from 15:00 to 22:00. The quota will be gradually introduced: over the course of the first year the law is in place the share of Ukrainian songs shall be at least 25% of the total daily volume of songs, during the second year – 30%, and during the third – 35%. A special “reduced” quota at 25% will be provided for radio organizations, that during the day broadcast at least 60% (50% and 55% within the law’s first and second years respectively) of their songs in official languages of the EU.
In addition, the new law also establishes that at least 60% of daily radio content (such as news and entertainment) will be conducted in the state language.
Radio organizations, that offer an increase in their broadcasting quotas of 5 or more percent than the legally defined rate can receive an advantage in licensing competitions. Finally, for not complying with these rates, TV and radio organizations will pay a fee of 5% of the total amount of the licensing fee.
The law will take effect 4 months after its publication.
Сompiled by Alexandra Jason for CEDEM