UPDATE.A group of Polish MPs from the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party have submitted draft amendments to the Broadcasting Act to the Sejm (parliament). If accepted, they could result in the national broadcaster TVN, which is owned by Discovery, losing all its licences.
Quoting the draft amendments, Wirtualne Media reports that they are aimed at clarifying regulations allowing the regulator KRRiT to counteract the takeover of Polish broadcasters by entities outside the EU, including those from states posing a significant threat to state security.
Meanwhile, Juliusz Braun, a member of the Nation Media Council and a former head of KRRiT, speaking to Onet, said changes in the law could force Discovery to sell TVN.
Broadband TV News notes that the latest development comes alongside KRRiT’s refusal to renewal the licence held by the news-based channel TVN24.
It is, like TVN, owned by Discovery Group and its 10-year licence expires this September.
In a statement issued following the announcement of the draft amendments, the management board at TVN said: “For TVN, the most important are viewers and their right to reliable, verified information. It is on their behalf that our journalists ask questions and have been looking at the hands of every authority for over 20 years.
“Last night, a bill was presented which is trying to silence and deprive viewers of the right to choose. Under the guise of fighting foreign propaganda, attempts are being made to limit the freedom of the media.
“We will not yield to any pressure and we will remain independent, acting on behalf of our viewers”.