Mérték conducts a two-part analysis of the Media Council’s practices with regard to tendering and licensing. In the first report, Mérték examines the tender competitions of the 35 local radio frequencies that had been initiated by the former media authority, the National Radio and Television Commission (ORTT) but completed by the Media Council. The organization found that three providers–Mária Radio, Lánchíd Radio, and Európa Radio–won 15 of these frequencies. Lánchíd Radio is the property of Infocenter Zrt, which is owned by Fidesz-lined businessmen Zsolt Nyerges, who also owns national weekly Heti Válasz and the national commercial radio station, Class FM. The organization also found that soon after awarding local licenses to Lánchíd Radio, the Media Council amended the terms of the license to expand the broadcast coverage for each of the frequencies. This has enabled the station to build a regional presence, although the original terms of its licenses were for local coverage.
In part two of its series on the Media Council’s tendering and licensing practices, Mérték examines the frequency bids decided by the Media Council between the end of 2011 and Fall 2012. During the period, the Media Council held a total of 58 tender competitions, of which 20 concluded without a result, and issued 38 new radio licenses.