5.3.7 Mass media
The new Law on Mass Media dates from 2000 and states that government and non-government TV and radio organisations have equal rights and responsibilities to carry out programming, irrespective of their form of property, organisational and legal status. There are no language limitations for media in the territory of Azerbaijan. Besides the state language, any other languages spoken by the population of Azerbaijan may be used, as well as other languages. The Azerbaijani television stations broadcast programmes in Azerbaijani, Russian and English. The radio stations in Azerbaijan also produce programmes in Georgian, Lezghin, Talish and Kurdish.
The President of the Republic of Azerbaijan signed two orders during 2001: "On increasing state support to the mass media" (July) and "On additional measures relating to increased state aid for the mass media" (December). The measures envisaged include: the abolition of import duties on newsprint, long-term loans and preferential credit facilities for development of the mass media, measures to promote the extension of independent TV and radio broadcasting, regulation of broadcasting by foreign TV companies in the national territory, a review of taxes levied on press concerns and private TV and radio companies, and printing facilities for private newspapers in state printing houses.
In June 2002, a new Law on TV and Radio Broadcasting was introduced, which describes the principles and organisation of these spheres, as well as the legal relations between the state and TV and radio company owners.
See also chapter 4.2.6.