Voice of Bessarabia seeks help to survive

The radio channel Voice of Bessarabia has launched a campaign to collect funds for its further activity because it runs the risk to disappear. The administration and the team of the radio channel has released a call upon Moldovan citizens, economic agents and donor organisations from Moldova and other countries to help Voice of Bessarabia survive. Voice of Bessarabia, which faces grave financial problems, accused the Moldovan leadership of blocking its activity, especially by refusing to award a broadcasting frequency for development of its network. „Voice of Bessarabia is part of few radio channels which provide information of wide interest and broadcast all opinions existing in society, a phenomenon ignored by media institutions financed from the state budget and obliged by law to work for public interest,” the signatories of the call said. They noted that the channel „needs funds to cover the maintenance expenses, to employ more journalists and to produce different, more interesting programmes with more news, debates, analyses and commentaries on events.” The signatories called for support of businessmen, civil society for the „American model of public radio subsidised from citizen’ s contribution and engaged to monitor carefully and strictly the competence and conduct of political class that bids or exerts the governing.” Asked to comment on the present situation of the radio channel Voice of Bessarabia, the executive director of the Moldovan Electronic Press Association (APEL), Ion Bunduchi, stated to Info-Prim Neo that this situation is typical to most of domestic radio channels, which are used to spend minimal funds in order to survive. He noted that „foreign commercial radio channels only enjoy a better condition” at present. The APEL executive director considers that a cause of the situation faced by Voice of Bessarabia is that the advertising market in Moldova is underdeveloped. There are 200 audiovisual institutions in Moldova and Bunduchi considers that the question „how much advertising is needed on Moldova’s market for a normal functioning of these institutions” is relevant. He noted that „nobody has accurately evaluated the advertising market in Moldova, so that the state be able to establish how many media institutions can function if it wants an efficient administration of broadcast frequencies.” „The call of Voice of Bessarabia will be a test for Moldovan society,” Bunduchi stressed, noting that its price for value and importance of information will be the test. According to Bunduchi, this situation could be solved only if the state would regard the information of citizens as a priority. „The lack of a clear audiovisual development strategy, imperfect legislation on broadcasting and underdeveloped economy cannot create a favourable environment for activity of broadcasters, Bunduchi added. Voice of Bessarabia was launched six years ago. Its programmes are original and of community interest.

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