The financial and financial situation of Televisión Nacional de Chile, our television of greatest national roots, which appears from the reading of its audited financial statements and published as of March 2020, is frankly worrying, because of the state of financial impairment and its legal task that is observed there.
Any minimally informed analyst can find with astonishment that TVN, a «self-driving» company of the State, registers a cumulative loss as of March of the current year up to US$100,000,000.-, which the previous year 2019 reached the amount of US$65,921,630.-.
It is also apparent from its financial statements that in 2018 by Law No. 21.085, the State injected it with an «extraordinary capitalization» of US$65,000,000.- intended to finance exclusively investment projects, subject to the control of the Ministry of Finance. Then, under Budget Law No. 21.125, 2019, the State was authorized to inject US$25,000,000.- and then in January 2020 the government granted state guarantee to the television company, to take out debt of US$70,000,000.-Consequently, if we add up the direct and indirect capital contributions to the Fisco State from 2018 to 2020 , has given TVN the sum of US$ 137,000,000.- and the loss accumulated as of March 2020 reaches the amount of US$100,000,000.-, concludes that the management of the TVN administration, since 2013 – the last year in which it had profits -, has been unable to generate a sustainable and «autonomous» corporate administration of the State and that in contrast , technically it is a company in a permanent financial «default» and that economically subsists only on the permanent contributions of capital that must be permanently injected by the State.
But TVN’s financial situation does not only end in this deficit estate status, but is more serious, since the financial statements as of March 2020, reflect that virtually all the properties of the state-owned company, have been delivered in financial leasing operations to the domain of commercial banks including Banco Estado, so that TVN no longer owns a significant amount of its properties , but he disposed of them in exchange for fresh capital and now occupies them as a landlord paying lease income to creditor banks and has the expectation of recovering them in the future, if possible, the option of retro-purchase, which is followed by THAT TVN has fewer assets in its assets and more liabilities or bank debt.
It can be said that TVN has not been able to fulfil its commitments to fulfil its public office by Law No. 19.132 of 1992, and that it is clearly not an «autonomous» company of the State, but on the contrary, it depends year on year on the Budget Law for its annual budget year. It can also be recorded that TVN is far or rather in the antipodes of legal design and public tasks established by Law No. 19.132 of 1992, when if it began a return to democracy and a large majority of citizens had high expectations and hopes of being able to establish and watch a public and democratic television, plural in its content , at the service of culture and the plurality of ideas in our country.
What is clear is that TVN through its corporate governance, which includes the political sensitivities of the majority political parties of our democracy, since of its seven members of the Board six are elected by the Senate on the proposal of the President of the Republic and its Presiding Director is directly elected by the President of the Republic, he has been unable to generate a sustainable enterprise , all of which results in a tremendous account due, since it has not been able to develop a sustainable public television model economically, without permanently in the last seven years being able to fulfill its commitments of its public mission, which entrusts its regulatory law.
In this context, it is apparent that TVN requires in this complex social and economic context, of a major surgery through a medium-term strategic plan, which allows to channel and connect the public company with its basic principles in the financial and in its public role of content of quality television programming. Clearly, technical market explanations which seek to justify their current deficit heritage status are not enough, let alone appeal to the mirage already in our midst of aspiring to a BBC-style television company in London. As the economist Jeannette von Wolfersdorff has pointed out, public expenditure is required to be linked to the purposes pursued by the State, by granting funding to a public good, which must be justified on the basis of an explicitly stated purpose, especially when proposing and approving the budget law. Clearly in the case of TVN, these principles have not taken precedence in the last eight years of management.
How will the financial situation of the public company TVN justify the President of its Board Ana Holuigue Barros before the Senate, in her next annual public account for the 2019 financial year and what business remedies will offer to overcome this calamitous financially critical business state of public television?