Newspaper: Estonian Advertising Money Being Spent on Putin's Government Channel ({{commentsTotal}})

Nearly 150 Estonian companies and government agencies are advertising this year on the Russian state television channel RTR Rossiya, Estonia's business daily writes today.

The companies that are buying advertising time include the Estonian Health Insurance Fund, which is among the top 20 buyers, according to Äripäev's cover story.

RTR Rossiya, which is watched by many Russian-speaking residents of Estonia and carries the official line of President Vladimir Putin's government, many of the advertisements appear around the main news program Vesti, which is criticized for its propagandistic take that reflects the Kremlin's views on local and world events, although it is couched in a professional-looking presentation.

In April, RTR was banned from Latvia and Lithuania for three months over what those governments considered propagandistic broadcasts.

Other countries that do business in Estonia that are listed as advertisers include Tele2, Credit24, Stockmann, Rimi and Säästumarket.

The nature and tone of Russian broadcasts has spurred public discussion this year about setting up a more balanced Russian-language news channel in both Estonia and the Baltic states at large.

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