The Latvian regulator NEPLP has revoked the broadcasting licence of the Russian language First Baltic Channel Latvia (PBK).
In a statement, it says it has taken the action because “during the year, three significant violations of the Electronic Media Law were identified in the operation of the PBK programme schedule”.
NEPLP adds that the first case a penalty was received for a gross violation of the basic conditions of the issued broadcasting licence by broadcasting programmes created by other electronic media in the schedule of PBK. In the second case, the penalty was imposed for non-compliance with the obligation to provide at least 51% of a week’s European audiovisual works. In the third case, the penalty was imposed because PBK disseminated information that endangers public health or may pose serious and serious risks. Namely, Covid-19 infection is a low contagious disease and can be prevented by eating herring.
“Evaluating the violations of regulatory enactments committed by PBK, it can be concluded that each of the violations was a significant violation, as they caused damage to such specially protected rights and interests as state and public health and safety interests, especially during an emergency”.
PBK’s broadcasting licence was issued for 10 years in February 2015 and will be officially revoked on October 26.
PBK is operated by an international media group known as the Baltic Media Alliance. Its portfolio includes a number of Russian language channels aimed at the Baltic countries.