After we reported that the Israeli national broadcaster IPBC is on the verge of forfeiting its rights to host the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest, the Finance Minister of Israel stated that the Government has no intention of assisting IPBC in funding Eurovision!
In an interview with the Israeli news portal Ynet, Mr. Moshe Kahlon (pictured) stated the following:
The corporation (IPBC) has made a grave mistake. It has to manage its affairs like any other government body. Its attempts to tie the situation to politics are erroneous. They are able to transfer the sum in a minute. If they do not transfer the guarantee, they will make a grave mistake, which will be contrary to the rules and regulations.
There is no reason why the contest shouldn’t be held in Israel. The situation is a result of a professional fight between those in the IPBC and the treasury … the IPBC is a government body, it is financed by the taxpayers’ money and it has to operate according to the rules and regulations.
If the IPBC does not want to host it, the Eurovision will not happen.
People from IPBC have responded to Mr. Kahlon with the following:
We have been saying all along that the IPBC is unable to foot the bill of the production cost. If the government decides to finance it, the Eurovision will be held in Israel. The IPBC once again urges the decision makers to sit down and reach an agreement over budget with the treasury.
IPBC can not finance the production of the Eurovision Song Contest from its budget, which is completely transparent and covers a wide range of activities on three television channels, nine radio stations and digital activity.
IPBC is legally obligated to invest in content and productions throughout the year. Almost every country that received the right to host the Eurovision Song Contest participated in its budget and made a huge profit from the tourism of thousands of visitors and from global exposure, and all our attempts to find a common solution were ignored.
The significance of the decision is that the government is inequivocally waiving the right to host the competition.
A source very close to Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel, stated:
The Prime Minister and the Finance Minister have decided a body budgeted at the enormous amount of NIS 750 million at the expense of the public can find the funds for a guarantee for Eurovision. The IPBC is being wasteful and trying to sabotage the Eurovision Song Contest.
IPBC however claim that they would not be able to take the money out of its own budget unless it fires 200 employees or cuts down on original productions.
Check back with ESCBubble for further updates on this developing situation. Leave us your comments on our social channels!