Accompanied by Humanitarian Premier Vyacheslav Kyrylenko, Victor Yushchenko visited the National Television Company of Ukraine (NTCU) and met with its director general, Vitaly Dokalenko.

The aim of the visit  was to approve a 2006 development concept for the company and to find ways to reform it into public television, the President's press office reported.

The Head of State stressed: “There is no ‘to be or not to be’ political argument about public television. It will definitely be!”

Yushchenko added that this project should be a television “project number one” and called on all employees to jointly formulate a detailed plan of this transformation and to improve the quality of their programs.

Addressing the news reporters, Yushchenko emphasized: “You are journalists with a special status. You should always cover state policy objectively and impartially.”

Then the President inspected the territory of the television company. He said in January 2006 they would announce a tender to formulate the best concept to use this territory and to complete the construction of the central entrance and the concert hall.

“I am sure in five years we will all see a television town here,” he said.

Then the Head of State visited one of the NTCU’s four movie archives. There he saw old magnetic tapes and was told they should be immediately digitalized. Some of them were recorded in 1908. There are also many records from the 1920s. It might take up to USD 400,000 to digitalize them, and Yushchenko promised to find necessary budget funds.

The President also visited the editing room, the newsroom and even watched some New Year program for kids being produced.

The NTCU now takes up the biggest part of the television center. The 1+1 Chanel, the Era Company and the UTR State Satellite Channel rent offices there.


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