Tallinn city government wraps up PBK news show on May 28

The news channel in Russian, Pervõi Baltiiski (PBK) will air its final show of "Tallinn uudised", initiated by the Tallinn City Government, on Thursday, May 28. If and when the shows already prepared could be aired is not yet known.

"According to the agreement, ´Tallinna uudised´ aired four times a week during the coronavirus pandemic. The channel hosted the show until May 28. This week, the final show is to air," said head of the Russian-language press service of Tallinn City Government, Kristina Rossman.

Rossman said she evaluated the cooperation with PBK in a positive light.

"We need to note that the cooperation was efficient - the high ratings prove this. According to data from a Kantar Emor television audience survey, ´Tallinna uudised´ came in second place among Russian language shows in April, immediately after the city program 'Meie pealinn', which also airs on PBK channel," Rossmann added.

Despite these stats, the city government is not planning to continue with the show.

The agreement on the airing the show was made at the end of March. The show ran from Monday to Thursday. PBK gave its television time to the city government for free, and the shows were produced by Tallinn TV (TTV), which is owned by the city government but which stopped broadcasting last autumn.

ubbmedia OÜ, which has been producing the program "Eesti uudised" for PBK for many years, was involved in the production of "Tallinna uudised". The show was aired on March 20.

The production of "Tallinn News" was paid for from the TTV budget.

PBK announced in March that it was ceasing production of "Eesti Uudised", citing "disproportionate economic pressure from national and law enforcement authorities on Baltic Media Alliance (BMA) companies."

Latvia's internal security service, the VDD, swooped on BMA's Riga offices in early February, following suspicions of EU sanctions evasions, primarily relating to Oleg Solodovs, BMA co-owner and board chair, who is named on EU sanctions lists which appeared after the 2014 occupation of Crimea by the Russian Federation, and the ongoing insurgency conflict in eastern Ukraine.

PBK - Pervõi Baltiiski Kanal, literally "First Baltic Channel" - is reportedly the most popular Russian-speaking TV channel in the Baltics by viewership. Its set-up is based on Channel One Russia (Pervyy kanal), a nationwide broadcaster in the Russian Federation.


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Editor: Roberta Vaino

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