The Eurovision Song Contest 2017 will not be broadcast in New Zealand this year as UKTV opts to drop this years contest.
After three years of broadcasting the Eurovision Song Contest, UKTV has dropped the contest from their schedule this year. UKTV in previous years had been cutting back on the scale of its broadcast in both 2014 and 2015, the channel broadcast both semi finals and the final live and then on repeat in the evening. However in 2016 the channel cut back its coverage to just a live and repeat broadcast of the final.
In a statement to Dan News a Media and Entertainment website in New Zealand, UKTV stated:
Sadly, UKTV won’t be airing Eurovision this year. The UKTV programming team tries to strike the right balance of programming to suit the varied tastes of viewers, and has decided not to air Eurovision in order to bring exciting new premium drama titles such as Top of the Lake, SS-GB and Delicious to the channel.
This is not the first time that the Eurovision Song Contest has been dropped by a broadcaster in New Zealand. Between 2009 and 2011, Stratos broadcast the Eurovision Song Contest on a 12 hour delay in 2009 before delaying the show until June and July in 2010 and 2011.
Broadcasters who have shown the contest in previous years include:
- Canada – OUTtv (2014 to 2015)
- China – Hunan Television (2015 to date)
- Faroe Islands – KVP (Live broadcast in 2011 & 2014)
- Greenland – KNR (Delayed broadcast in 2011)
- Kazakhstan – Khabar Agency (2010 to date)
- Kosovo – RTK
- Kyrgyzstan – KRTK (2012)
- New Zealand – UKTV (2014 to 2016)
- United States – LogoTV (2016)
To date China is the only non-participating nation to confirm that they will be broadcasting the Eurovision Song Contest 2017. Hunan Television holds the rights to broadcast the contest up until 2018.
A total of 43 countries are to compete in the Eurovision Song Contest 2017 in Kyiv, Ukraine. Returning to the Eurovision stage are Portugal and Romania who both took a year out from the contest. Bosnia & Herzegovina has however withdrawn from the contest due to financial difficulties at the national broadcaster, BHRT. The 62nd edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is being held on the following dates:
- Semi Final 1 – 9 May
- Semi Final 2 – 11 May
- Final – 13 May