TV2, the commercial television station purchased last year by government commissioner for the film industry and gambling mogul Andy Vajna, has run nearly HUF 3.7 billion (USD 13.7 million) worth of state “pubic service announcements” since January, reports Hungarian news site 444.hu.
According to 444, of the nine television stations to run the ads, five are state-owned media channels and three are pro-government. Independent broadcaster ATV was the only “opposition” channel to run the government spots.
So far this year the state has spent some HUF 4.4 billion (USD 16.3 million) advertising its anti-EU refugee quota campaign. Of this amount, more than three-quarters went to TV2.
Hungary’s second-largest commercial television station, which lost a fortune under its previous owners, has been doing quite well since Vajna bought it last year primarily with loans issued by state-owned banks.