Updated at 13:48,15-08-2017

Belsat TV hit by funding cuts

By Zakhar Shcharbakow, BelaPAN

Belsat TV has been hit by funding cuts, Agnieszka Romaszewska-Guzy, director of the Warsaw-based Belarusian-language channel, said in an interview with BelaPAN.

The executive gave the interview during a rare visit to Minsk, where she is expected to stay for more than a week.

Ms. Romaszewska-Guzy said that Sweden, Norway and Canada had withdrawn funding for Belsat TV and it was unclear whether the European Union would continue funding the channel. Belsat TV is being funded exclusively by the Polish government for the time being, she said.

She said that the channel`s budget had been slashed by slightly more than a fourth.

Asked whether Belsat TV could be transformed into a public channel funded with donations from viewers, Ms. Romaszewska-Guzy said that it was yet early to consider the scenario but acknowledged that it could be possible. However, she warned, donations from Belarusian viewers alone would never be enough to cover the channel`s costs.

Despite the financial constraints, Belsat TV continues developing and will launch a redesigned website with access to its show archive in mid-June, said the executive.