Daniel Papp, the chief executive of Hungary’s Media Service Support and Asset Management Fund MTVA, said Hungary’s public media is balanced and operates in line with professional standards and the relevant legal provisions.
Addressing delegates of the European Commission on Thursday, Papp presented the situation and operations of Hungary’s public service media to the EC delegation which was fact-finding for its 2023 rule-of-law report. All content is produced in line with international standards, MTVA said in a statement. Papp presented the guarantees for balance and impartiality included in the MTVA code of ethics, the media law, and the public service code of ethics, the statement said. Ahead of last year’s parliamentary elections, similarly to previous elections, MTVA set up a public media election office to ensure that not only during the campaign but also during the elections all public media services met the requirements of the public media code of ethics and the corresponding legal regulations, the statement added. Papp said that despite efforts by the opposition parties “to drag the public media on to the political stage with accusations and lies”, it was statistically proven that the public media offered the opportunity of coverage to all parliamentary parties, but the parties did not take up these opportunities. Representatives of left-wing parties pursued a campaign of non-attendance, despite regularly being invited to appear on television and radio programmes, “trying to undermine the credibility and neutrality of the public media by boycotting it”, he added. During the election campaign, the relevant authorities did not find fault with Hungary’s public media in connection with any complaints or claims of imbalance. In a single case brought before the National Election Committee, the decision went in favour of the public media, the statement said. A basic rule of the operation of Hungary’s public media is that politics must not have an influence on the production of content, MTVA said.