The national Swedish broadcaster SVT helped Estonian and Latvian TV to stage the contest in 2002 and 2003 respectively. In 2004, they are staging it again.
Three years ago, in 2000, Sveriges Television (SVT) staged the up to then biggest and most spectacular Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) at the Globen Arena in Stockholm.
When in 2001 Estonia won, the European Broadcasting Union, EBU, allowed SVT to give the Estonian broadcaster ETV a helping hand with the 2002 ESC as ETV had never staged something like this before.
Turkey, this year's winner, is also staging the contest for the first time in 2004, and SVT has already been hired as consultants. “The Turks do not wish to appear as ignorant, but fact remains that SVT is in charge of the staging next year too”, says a source at SVT.
SVT is the broadcaster that has, directly or indirectly, staged the contest most times within the past three years (Stockholm 2000, Tallinn 2002, Riga 2003), and as the source at SVT indicates, “it would in fact be stupid not to make use of the qualifications which we now have in this line of joint live broadcasts”.
More than 165 million television viewers followed this year's contest from Riga, Latvia. In 2004 there are to be two contests, the first of which is a qualifying round with 40 countries and the other the so-called “final”. The task of having to organise two shows, one might say, motivates Turkish TV even more.