The Association of Journalists of Macedonia (AJM) and the Independent Union of Journalists and Media Workers (SSNM) call on the Government of NMK to adopt urgent measures to facilitate the work of the media in this difficult period. Our initial analysis shows that intervention measures are needed to financially support journalists and media workers. We think that these measures can go in two directions.
Either to allocate funds per employee in the amount of the minimum salary or all media to be exempted from paying contributions in the next two months. We also require a delay of two months of paying VAT for companies dealing with media activities.
After these two months a new assessment will be made in order to determine whether measures need to be continued. In terms of global pandemic of the coronavirus such measures will enable the media to easily overcome this difficult period which unfortunately brings negative economic consequences. The main precondition for the media to use these benefits should be not to fire their employees (journalists and media workers) for the duration of the measures.
The situation we are in has deeply affected the private sector as well, and with this in mind for the media is becoming increasingly difficult to survive in the market as advertisers have reduced their media advertising during this period. These measures will provide safe workplace for all employees in the media sector. This will ease the financial pressure on the media and journalists who play a key role in informing the public in this crisis.
AJM, SSNM and other media organizations are available during this period for the purpose of finding joint solutions to facilitate the work of the media and journalists.