The management of the public broadcaster HRT said on Wednesday that it would forward a new official proposal for the monthly subscription fee, currently HRK 80, to the HRT Supervisory Board, which has to approve it, by the end of the year, after which the fee has to be approved by the Electronic Media Agency.
In a reply to a query from Hina, the HRT did not say if the new proposal would envisage new categories of customers, for example if the fee would be cut for socially vulnerable pensioners, which was an election proposal by the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ).
The HRT's announcement that the new proposal will be forwarded by the end of the year came after the Bridge party said that one of the conditions for its post-election cooperation with the HDZ was cutting the monthly HRT subscription fee from 80 to 65 kuna, which would reduce the broadcaster's revenues by HRK 228 million. Currently, the HRT annually earns HRK 1.2 billion from subscription fees.
In May, the HRT Supervisory Board invited the management to draft a decision on the fee for 2017, including benefits for some categories of customers.
The HRT Act does not stipulate the fee amount but says that, based on this law and a contract between the HRT and the government, the maximum monthly fee can amount to 1.5% of the average salary.
The HRT did not comment on the possibility of changing the fee, which has been frozen at HRK 80 for the past six years although, under the law, it could be raised to HRK 86.
It is not necessary to amend the law to cut the fee but a motion to that effect needs to be upheld by the HRT Supervisory Board and the Electronic Media Agency.
(EUR 1 = HRK 7.5)
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