Harrowing news coming in from Bulgaria today is that their national broadcaster BNT has officially gone bankrupt. According to Bulgarian news source Capital, BNT has amassed over 9 million euro’s worth of debt and some predictions are that the figure could be substantially closer to 10 million than originally expected. The news comes just as the broadcaster is getting ready to hold it’s elections to find a new director general with many saying it’s too little to late.
The exact amount of debt which BNT is in, isn’t yet known publicly but the BNT unions have started to announce the budget deficit which the broadcaster is facing. The new elections to find a director general are now going to have to take a new turn as the budget hole needs filling. There are a few answers as to how these debts can be solved some could be simple enough for the broadcaster such as the government covering some parts of it but the reality is that more painful measures are going to be needed at the broadcaster. Staff cuts, contract terminations and salary cuts are all extremely probable at this point.
According to sources given to Capital news in Bulgaria (Two of the Bulgarian National Television team and one from the Ministry of Finance) the majority of the debts racked up during Konstantin Kamenarov’s stint as director general came from…
- The increased costs of external projects
- The purchase of more sports rights
- Increasing the salaries of BNT employees
- The purchase of large film packages and programmes.
But what does this mean in terms of Eurovision? Well, we can safely bet that they won’t present in Gilwice with the elections taking place in July their priorities are going to lie elsewhere and as far the contest in The Netherlands goes participation is also looking unlikely. Unless BNT can secure funding from the government and start to alleviate these debts they’re going to hold back on spending in big projects.
Capital the Bulgarian news source claims to of contacted the State TV aswell as Emil Koshlukov (interim director general) but both declined to comment on the matter.