Knesset panel waives IBA’s debts

Vote on giving Channel 10 more time to repay debt postponed again.

December 27, 2011 02:37
2 minute read.
IBA logo

IBA logo311. (photo credit: Courtesy)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


The Knesset Economics Committee approved waiving the Israel Broadcasting Authority’s 2011 debts Monday, but again delayed a vote on whether to forgive financially- stricken Channel 10’s debt repayments for another year.

Kadima MK Yoel Hasson slammed the government for repeatedly delaying discussion on Channel 10, and in particular called into question the actions of Ze’ev Elkin (Likud), who led Monday’s meeting.

'Comparison between IBA, Channel 10 is a hollow ruse'

“Some 120,000 people demonstrated in Moscow Sunday against the same sort of behavior exhibited by Elkin in the Economics Committee this morning. This Putinesque horror show and the silencing of the committee chairman are preludes to the blacking out of Channel 10 on January 27,” Hasson said.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

Channel 10 CEO Yossi Varshavsky said he was perplexed that MKs had agreed to pardon the IBA’s debts while at the same time resist allowing Channel 10 more time to repay its debts.

“Over a matter of NIS 45 million [in debts], for which we are not seeking a pardon, Stalin and his cultural commissar [Andrei] Zhdanov want to shut us down for doing our job.”

The allegation of political motives goes back to a report by Haaretz in November that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu tried to have Channel 10 investigative reporter Raviv Druker fired.

Netanyahu and wife Sara are suing Druker and a colleague over a broadcast earlier this year of allegations the prime minister billed two organizations for flights in 2006.

Varshavsky later asked that his comments be withdrawn from the record, following an angry reaction from MK Israel Eichler (UTJ), who said that Stalin and Zhdanov shut down synagogues and harmed Soviet Jewry.


The real comparison, Eichler said, should be between the actions of Stalin and Zhdanov and those of Channel 10, who he accused of inciting against Judaism.

The big winner from Monday’s committee meeting, the IBA, had owed the state NIS 300m. for failing to meet its obligations to devote 36 percent of its annual budget to the local production industry.

The IBA itself says it invested just NIS 25m. in local production this year, instead of the required NIS 176m.

A proposal by MK Eitan Cabel (Labor) to have the entire Knesset vote on waiving the IBA’s debts from 2012 and beyond was rejected, as was a proposal by MK Einat Wilf (Independence), to assess the broadcaster’s obligations to local production on a quarterly – rather than a yearly – basis.

“We already know they will not meet their obligations in the future,” Cabel said.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
August 31, 2014
Prime minister to Channel 1: I’ll be running again in next election

By Gil Stern Stern HOFFMAN