From Iceland — MP Wants To Sell State Radio Station

MP Wants To Sell State Radio Station

Published October 3, 2014

Andie Sophia Fontaine
Photo by
Elínborg Önundardóttir

Progressive MP and Chairperson of the Budget Committee Vigdís Hauksdóttir wants to sell state radio station Rás 2, with the proceeds to go into government coffers.

Vísir reports that Vigdís has called for a special meeting of the Budget Committee due to the dire financial status of state broadcasting network RÚV. Speaking to listeners on radio station Reykjavík Síðdegis, she put forward an idea on how more revenue could be generated.

“The best thing would be if it were possible to sell Rás 2 and maybe get some money into the treasury,” she said. “All options are open. Now we have to take a good look at the situation, because the very last option where this is concerned is to pump more money into RÚV.”

RÚV is in bad financial shape, owing some 5.5 billion ISK, largely due to their pension fund obligations. However, Vigdís has made her opinions of RÚV as an institution a matter of public record.

In August 2013, Vigdís complained about a RÚV news story where she was featured, saying, “Is it natural that a government office like RÚV, which takes 4 billion ISK a year in tax money in addition to advertising revenue in competition with private channels, behaves in this way?”

Vigdís then added: “I am of course in this budget streamlining group, and it covers everything. I think an unnatural amount of money goes to RÚV. Especially when they don’t do a better job at reporting the news. They are fond of a particular platform, and lean to the Left. Everyone who wants to see that can see it. I assure you this is true, and can confirm it whenever and wherever that [RÚV] is very pro-EU.”

A final decision on when or if Rás 2 will be sold is still pending.

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