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01. 07. 2016


BELGRADE/NOVI SAD/KRAGUJEVAC, July 1st, 2016 - A coalition of journalists' and media associations (UNS, NUNS, NDNV, PU Lokal Pres and ANEM) express their regrets over the fact that the Culture and Information Ministry has requested clarification on the criteria set by the Commission in selecting projects of electronic and online media, after the deadline for implementation of the competition for co-financing of production of media content.

The Coalition notes that the Regulations for the realization of public interests in the field of public information stipulates that if the minister "finds the Commission has acted in contrary to the provisions of the Act, the Regulations as well as the conditions set out in the Call for proposals, or that its proposal of selected projects contains other obvious irregularities, the Minister may request that the Commission correct the irregularities and make necessary adjustments to the proposal within the prescribed deadline".

The Ministry's statement does not, however, specify that the Commission has indeed acted contrary to the Act, the Regulations and the conditions of the Call, or that is proposal has had any errors or irregularities. The Ministry has simply stated that "there is a need for clarification of the criteria used by the Commission". However, such request does not fall within the prescribed framework.

The Coalition reminds on the fact that the Commission has been appointed by the Minister's decision and that the deadline for competition of the sad Call has already expired, within which deadline eight commissions had timely completed their work. The Coalition also points out that any delay in signing of a decision not based on the Act, Regulations and conditions of the Call is unacceptable, much like any public discrediting of the Commission and its work on the Ministry's website.

The Coalition notes that the Ministry is already late with the publication of final results of the Call and allocation of funds to print media and productions, for which two other commissions have already given their justified proposal.

The Coalition states that the point in co-financing media content production projects every year is to timely allocate funds to media and that the Ministry has already been six months late in doing their job.

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