Serbian regulator mulls revoking licences of TV Avala, Pink TV over unpaid fees.

By bne IntelliNews January 27, 2012
Serbia's broadcasting agency, RRA, said it has launched a procedure for revoking TV Avala's licence over two months of unpaid broadcasting fees, daily Blic reported. RRA has also sent a notice letter to Pink TV, warning its licence might be cancelled due to unpaid fees. The owner of Pink TV, Zeljko Mitrovic, controls a minority stake in TV Avala. TV Avala should make the overdue payments until April if it wants to continue using national frequencies, the deputy head of the RRA council, Goran Karadzic, told Blic. He said RRA typically initials a licence withdrawal procedure following two months of non-payment. Karadzic, however, declined to say how much TV Avala's unpaid obligations total. Yet, the daily said a monthly fee for national frequencies usage is around RSD 4.5mn (EUR 42,600) TV Avala's accounts have already been blocked because of unpaid debt of over RSD 5mn. Its employees have been on strike in the past 36 days over unpaid salaries. The account of Pink TV has also been blocked due to RSD 180mn of unpaid liabilities, Blic said. Last week news daily Kurir said several media investors are interested in acquiring Pink TV. "Pink TV is in talks for a potential partnership with several interested parties, including Ringier Axel Springer, RTL and investment fund Mid Europa Partners," Pink Media Group owner Mitrovic told the daily. The talks might be wrapped up by May as one of the investors is expected to acquire a minority stake in Pink, he said.

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