Parliament votes for a law on transparency about media owners


The Verkhovna Rada has approved in its first reading a draft law “Introducing amendments to some laws of Ukraine on ensuring transparency of property relations with regard to the mass media”. 411 State Deputies voted for this on Wednesday.

The draft law proposes that when submitting documents to receive or extend broadcasting licenses to the National Television and Radio Broadcasting Council, information will have to be provided about the founders, co-founders, owners and joint owners of the media outlet. If the law is passed, television companies will be obliged to publish a full report of their work for the year with mandatory information about sources of finance. It is also proposed that the amount of foreign capital be restricted to 35 percent and that non-residents registered in offshore zones also be prohibited from holding more than 35 percent of the shares.

In May 2006 the Cabinet of Ministers suggested that the Verkhovna Rada take steps to ensure transparency of financing of the mass media.

The Institute of Mass Information has systematically called for this democratic standard to be introduced in the work of the Ukrainian media.

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