Romania has become the third country to reveal the expenses its public broadcaster spent on participating at Eurovision 2022 in Turin.
Spain’s RTVE spent almost €670,000 (£565,000) on “SloMo” and Ireland’s RTÉ poured at least €350,000 (£295,000) to get “That’s Rich” to the PalaOlimpico. A request from mainnews.ro revealed that Romania’s TVR spent just shy of €308,000 (£260,000) to stage “Llámame”. While that may not seem like a lot of money when compared to Spain, that is a lot of public money to come from one of Europe’s most struggling economies.
While that may not seem like a lot of money when compared to what Spain spent this year, that is a lot of public money to come from one of Europe’s most struggling economies. According to The World Bank, Romania ranks 28th in Europe by GDP per capita.
From this total spent by TVR, about €78,000 (£65,800) was spent on organizing and broadcasting the national final (‘Selecția Națională’), while slightly more than €160,000 (£135,800) paid the Eurovision participation fee. The approximate €70,000 (£59,000) remaining was spent on supplementary items, such as travel.
Some are not happy with the high cost, especially given the way things went for Romania in Turin. While WRS did qualify for the final, his upbeat dance number only managed a total of 12 points from the juries and an 18th place finish overall.
Worse still for Romania, came the accusation by the EBU that their national jury had cheated by manipulating votes. Along with San Marino, Georgia, Poland, Montenegro, and Azerbaijan, Romania had their Semi Final and Grand Final votes thrown out and replaced with points by the EBU who cited “irregular voting patterns“.
TVR vehemently denies the cheating, and its representatives had this to say:
Romanian Television fully took on its commitment to participate in Eurovision 2022, paying the participation fee and preparing, together with WRS’ team, a project that was appreciated by the public. […] However, we were surprised to find that the result of the Romanian jury’s vote was not taken into account in the calculation of the final ranking, the organizers assigned another set of scores to the contestants in the Final, on behalf of our country’s jury. We specify that the jury from Romania decided to give [its] maximum  points to the representatives of Moldova [Zdob și Zdub].
According to the same source, TVR is now up to date with the payment of its fees to the EBU, concluding an issue that had plagued Romania in the past. After choosing “Moment of Silence” by Ovidiu Anton in ‘Selecția Națională 2016’, Romania was disqualified from participating in Eurovision in Stockholm for repeated non-payment of EBU debts.
Unsurprisingly, all this has left a bad taste in TVR’s mouth, and as of publishing, Romania has not yet confirmed its intention to participate at Eurovision 2023 in the UK.
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