Rustavi 2 TV is charging political parties ahead of the May 21 parliamentary elections from USD 9,000 to USD 16,000 for a 30-second primetime political ad.
Primetime, a twice-weekly, late-night political talk show hosted by journalist Inga Grigolia, leads the pack in terms of cost – USD 16,000 for 30 seconds. It's followed by two weekly talk shows, Respond to the People (USD 14,000) and Triangle (USD 12,000) and the weekly Kurieri P.S. (USD 12,000).
The Rustavi 2 TV primetime evening daily news bulletin is charging from USD 9,000 to USD 13,000 for 30 seconds. The cheapest 30 second slot on Rustavi 2 TV is USD 200.
Mze TV, part of the same media holding company as Rustavi 2 TV, is charging USD 1,500 during its primetime news program.
The prices being quoted are an increase on those ahead of the January 5 presidential elections.
‘Qualified’ political parties – those that won at least 4% of the vote in the last parliamentary elections and at least 3% of the vote in the last local elections – legally must be granted 30 seconds of free airtime for every hour by private television stations and 60 seconds by the Georgian Public Broadcaster.
The ruling National Movement party is currently running an extensive paid TV ad campaign, while others mainly rely on free airtime allocated by the law.