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IRIS 2017-8:1/38

Ukraine

Analogue switch-off delayed until summer 2018

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Tobias Raab

Institute of European Media Law (EMR), Saarbrücken/Brussels

According to media reports, the Ukrainian cabinet has postponed the date of the analogue switch-off until 30 June 2018.

The head of the State Service for Special Communications and Information Protection, Leonid Yevdochenko, said that a number of financial and socio-economic problems needed to be resolved before the transition from analogue to digital broadcasting could be completed.

The delay had been on the cards for several months. In May 2017, Yuriy Artemenko, chairman of the national regulatory authority, had emphasised that the switch to digital broadcasting could not be completed this year. As a result, a draft cabinet resolution to postpone the date was adopted in June. Both analogue and digital broadcasting will therefore have to continue side by side in Ukraine until the switch at the end of June 2018.

This delay is not unusual; the analogue switch-off has already been postponed in other East European countries. In 2013, for example, Serbia decided to delay the transition until June 2015 because, despite huge support from the European Union, only around 20% of the required technical conditions and infrastructure were in place.