According to the Broadcasting Licensing Act, which was approved at the request of the ruling Law and Justice party, Duda, companies from non-EEA countries are no longer allowed to own a majority stake in Polish media companies.
According to critics, the law is directed against TVN, which is part of the American Discovery Group through a holding company registered in the Netherlands. The news channel TVN24 takes a critical stance against the ruling Polish party, Law and Justice.
The government once again declared that the law should protect the media landscape from potentially hostile players like Russia.
“I vetoed,” Duda said during a televised address on Monday. He said he remains loyal to the principle of protecting the media landscape, but also stated that the law should not question existing investments or conflict with international agreements.
Both the US government and the European Commission have criticized the law, which Europe says “threatens press freedom and the pluralism of Poland’s media landscape”. The US delegate in Warsaw, Pecs Aliu, had called on the Polish president to block the law.
By December 19, tens of thousands had taken to the streets against the new law.