Gill Gaspare, temporary co-ordinator for the Eurovision Song Contest, confirmed the list of 26 participants to esctoday.com. The 26th country will be the Ukraine.
“Due to thelarge number of participants, the Eurovision Song Contest Reference Group had to take an intermediate decision for 2003 until a new format has been worked out for 2004″, Gaspare told esctoday.com.
The countries that will participate in the Eurovision Song Contest 2003 will be: Austria, Belgium, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Cyprus, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Latvia, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Ukraine and the United Kingdom.
It seems to be unclear how the EBU wants to fit an extra country and an extra commercial break within the three broadcasting hours of the contest.