Prime Minister and press baron

Viktor Orban has steadily tightened his grip on the media since his re-election as Prime Minister in 2010. In October 2016, the Orban regime celebrated its biggest score after the suspension of both the print and online editions of Hungary’s most influential daily newspaper, Nepszabadsag. Although the Austrian owner of Mediaworks, the publishing company of Nepszabadsag, claimed that the suspension was based uniquely on financial grounds, it became apparent a few weeks later that the closure of the leading left-liberal daily newspaper was politically motivated. In November 2016, Mediaworks, at the time the biggest publisher of regional daily newspapers dominating more than 50% of that market, was sold to a company with close ties to the ruling party Fidesz and controlled by one of the Prime Minister's closest advisors. With this acquisition, Fidesz gained control of a dozen of regional daily newspapers and other media outlets. The economic weekly Figyelo was taken over by a wealthy businesswoman and close counsellor of the Prime Minister. Since the takeover, the new owner appointed a government-friendly political analyst as an editor-in-chief and the cover page of the weekly magazine is exclusively reserved for government members and top Fidesz politicians. The rapacious appetite of the ruling party has no limits.

in the 2017 World Press Freedom Index



67 in 2016

Global score


28.17 in 2016

  • 0
    journalists killed in 2018
  • 0
    citizens journalists killed in 2018
  • 0
    media assistants killed in 2018
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