The Ukrainian parliament (Verkhovna Rada) has in a second reading adopted amendments to the country’s laws ‘On Advertising’ and ‘On Television and Radio’.

Addressing advertising in programmes and foreign broadcasts, they are aimed at reducing the level of foreign advertising, growing the Ukrainian advertising market and bringing it in line with European standards. These steps should allow Ukrainian broadcasters to become more competitive.

The amendments will see the imposition of a ban on advertising carried by foreign broadcasters and transmissions by foreign broadcasters if those broadcasters are not subject to the jurisdiction of the EU or have not ratified the European Convention on Transfrontier Television.

They will particularly hit TV services operated by Russia, which is neither a member of the EU nor has signed the convention.

In the case of foreign and TV services from outside the EU or countries that have ratified the convention, broadcast advertising will only be permissible when it is paid for by legal entities in Ukraine.

The amendments will also see the imposition of a limit of 15% per hour for broadcast time allocated to advertising and teleshopping. For radio, this limit will be 20%.

The amendments in addition authorise the regulator (Rada) to require foreign broadcaster to compile a list of programmes that meet the legal requirements of Ukraine and the European Convention on Transfrontier Television.

The amendments will come into effect two months after their publication.