Kosovar media reports that RTK is hopeful that they will debut in the Eurovision Song Contest at next years contest in Portugal.
Magazina reports that the Kosovar national broadcaster is hopeful that they will be able to debut at next years Eurovision Song Contest. According to the report, RTK has received assurances that with the approval of the host broadcaster that the country will be able to participate in the Eurovision Song Contest 2018, 10 years on from gaining independence.
In a article published by RTK the Director of Television at the Kosovar broadcaster stated that he has received the support of national broadcasters across the Balkans to participate in the competition. However both Bosnia & Herzegovina and Serbia have opposed such participation. He added that the broadcaster had met with representatives of the EBU last year in Montenegro to discuss participation in the competition.
At the start of this year Kosovo also overcame a significant hurdle in terms of their ability to vote in the competition should they participate. In February the country was formally allocated an international dialing code, meaning viewers in Kosovo would be able to vote in the competition. Currently only San Marino is unable to vote in the contest, due to sharing telephone infrastructure with Italy.
Portugal, next years host country, is one of 111 countries globally to recognise the independence of Kosovo. However importantly Kosovo is not a member of the United Nations which is a pre-requisite for Kosovo to join the International Telecommunications Union. The EBU is a statement in January added,
Participation in the Eurovision Song Contest is limited to Members of the EBU or specially invited Associates. Kosovo does not meet the criteria to be either a Member or an Associate of the EBU. The statutes of the EBU say that a Member must come from a country that is a Member of the International Telecommunications Union or is a Member of the Council of Europe. Kosovo is in neither.
If Kosovo were to debut in the Eurovision Song Contest in 2018, they would be the first European nation to debut in the contest for a decade. Both Azerbaijan and San Marino debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 2008, while Australia has been competing in the competition since 2015.