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STV requests a billion crowns in debt relief

The Council of public broadcaster Slovak Television (STV) has approved the STV budget, which again counts on a loss in 2008 and expects Sk1 billion from state coffers to cover part of the loss (10 percent) and to provide funds for a new sports channel - STV3, the Sme daily reported, according to the TASR newswire.

The Council of public broadcaster Slovak Television (STV) has approved the STV budget, which again counts on a loss in 2008 and expects Sk1 billion from state coffers to cover part of the loss (10 percent) and to provide funds for a new sports channel - STV3, the Sme daily reported, according to the TASR newswire.

The budget doesn't mention how the broadcaster wants to cover last year's loss, which reached Sk200 million.

Two members of the Council who didn't vote for the budget, Peter Malec and Miroslav Kollár, stress that the loss will be higher this year, and that incomes have been overestimated by at least Sk100 million, while the costs of STV's planned projects have been underestimated. The state budget doesn't count on channeling money into STV, said Finance Minister Ján Počiatek (Smer-SD), adding that there are reserves for unexpected expenditures, however.

Culture Minister Marek Maďarič (also Smer) added that planning for a loss indicates that everything has been poorly considered. It also implies suspicions as to what the state will ask for in return. TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports

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