President of Latvia Egils Levits and Noel Curran, Director-General of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), met in the Riga Castle today to discuss the EU legal framework and EC’s audio-visual service initiatives, role of public service media in democratic systems and current global media landscape, the existing public service media framework in Latvia and progress in the adoption of changes in Latvia’s legal framework. Both President Levits and Director-General Curran agreed that the current media regulatory framework of the EU needs to be improved to ensure that it tackles challenges associated with digital media, international media corporations and social media.
President Levits underlined that strong public service media (PSM) is one of the cornerstones of democracy in Latvia and the whole Europe. He thanked the EBU for strengthening PSM.
Noel Curran thanked President Levits on behalf of the EBU for public support to PSM development, governance and funding. EBU’s Director General also referred to his meeting with LTV earlier in the day and underlined that LTV has very old equipment that fails to meet modern digital standards. Proper funding would sort out this problem.
Noel Curran is visiting Latvia to also meet with the Prime Minister, representatives of political parties elected to the Saeima, Latvian Union of Journalists and National Electronic Mass Media Council (NEPLP). He underlined that independence of PSM is crucial in ensuring that media can fulfil their democratic role.
President and Director-General also discussed various PSM governance models implemented in other European countries, which ensure media freedom and high-quality content for the public to benefit from.