Open Letter from the Board of EANA to the President of Slovenia, to the Speaker of the National Assembly and to the Prime-minister

EANA

Dear President of the Republic of Slovenia Pahor,

Dear Speaker of the Parliament Zorčič

Dear Prime Minister Janša,

We are writing to you on behalf of EANA, the European Alliance of News Agencies. EANA is the organisation of 32 leading European news agencies.

We got notice of the plans to change the functioning law of Slovenia´s News Agency STA, in the sense that the main principle of governance for STA shall switch from Slovenia´s National Assembly to the country’s Government. Consecutively there will be wide ranging consequences for the funds and finances of STA as well as for the governance of key positions within the agency such as the managing director and the editor-in-chief. EANA is deeply concerned about those plans.

STA has been a member of EANA for many years now, and its independence as an organisation of Slovenia´s national news infrastructure has always been undoubted. The now planned changes could alter that perception fundamentally.

National news agencies such as STA have been part of a network of international news exchanges for decades. Therefore news agencies are very important „voices'' of their respective countries in the world.

Independence from any third party influence is a cornerstone of the reputation of the news agency. The degree of independence is strongly related to its acceptance as a source of unbiased news within the international media scene.

The independence of a news agency is mainly determined by its ownership structure and the regulations deriving from it. For state funded/owned news agencies the independence of reporting is best displayed when the country’s Parliament is the one responsible for determining the governance of the agency. We regard this as a main reason for the success of STA´s activities.

EANA strongly recommends you to refrain from the plans to change STA´s governing legal framework. Its implementation could have severe consequences for the reputation and business of STA.

If there is any demand from your side for more information about the international news agency business as well as about best practice models, EANA would be happy to enter a discussion with you – also on a short term basis.


Best regards,

On behalf of the Board of EANA:


Peter Kropsch

President of EANA

President and CEO of dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur


Alexandru Giboi

Secretary General of EANA


Copies of this letter go to all 32 members of EANA:

AFP - Agence France Presse - France

ANSA - Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata - Italy

ATA - Albanian Telegraphic Agency

AA - Anadolu Agency - Turkey

ANA - Andorran News Agency

ANA-MPA - Athens News Agency / Macedonian Press Agency S.A. - Greece

APA - Austrian Press Agency

Belga - Belgian News Agency

BTA - Bulgarian News Agency

HINA - Croatian News Agency

CNA - Cyprus News Agency

CTK - Czech News Agency

ANP - Dutch News Agency

FENA - Federal News Agency - Bosnia and Herzegovina

STT - Finnish News Agency

dpa - German Press Agency

MTI - Hungarian News Agency Corp.

Keystone-SDA - Switzerland

Lusa - Portuguese National News Agency

NTB - Norwegian Press Agency

PA Media - United Kingdom

PAP - Polish Press Agency

RITZAUS BUREAU I/S - Denmark

AGERPRES - Romanian National News Agency

TASS - Russian News Agency

TASR - Slovakia Press Agency

STA - Slovene Press Agency

EFE - Spanish News Agency

AzerTac - State News Agency of the Republic of Azerbaijan

Tanjug News Agency - Serbia

TT - Tidningarnas Telegrambyrå - Sweden

Ukrinform - Ukrainian National News Agency