Kazakhstan: Will Khabar Agency debut in Eurovision 2017?

by Sanjay (Sergio) Jiandani 7,271 views

Will we see Kazakhstan debut at the forthcoming Eurovision Song Contest in Kyiv next year?

There has been a lot of speculation regarding Kazakhstan and its possible debut at the Eurovision Song Contest since some time, the alarms were set off last year when Kazakh broadcaster Khabar Agency was acccepted as an EBU associate member last December, hence Kazakshstan is an associate member of the EBU since January 2016. The EBU confirmed to ESCToday back in December that Kazakhstan was not ELIGIBLE to participate at the 2016 Eurovision Song  Contest.

We must not forget that only active EBU members are eligible to compete at the Eurovision Song Contest. Therefore associate members are not eligible to participate in the contest.

What about Australia? SBS is also an associate member of the EBU and has graced the Eurovision stage twice. Australia is  an exception as the broadcaster has been an EBU associate member for circa 30 years and has aired the contest for many years, not forgetting the high interest the contest enjoys down under. The Aussies love Eurovision!

Khabar Agency aired all 3 Eurovision shows from Stockholm earlier this year. There seems to be a high interest in ESC in the country. Khabar Agency ran a series of Eurovision related articles on their official website including participant profiles.

ESCToday contacted the EBU in order to shed more light on this matter and find out if Kazakshtan would indeed debut at the forthcoming Eurovision Song Contest in Kyiv. This is what the EBU responded:

For the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest EBU Associates, such as Khabar Agency in Kazakhstan, were not eligible to take part in the Contest save for an exception made for SBS Australia. The EBU is reviewing these rules ahead of next year’s competition, and will publish the latest edition on the Eurovision.tv site in due course.

How many countries will compete in Eurovision 2017? Will there any new countries joining the competition next year? Will Kazkhstan debut in the contest next year?  We will know the answers by end of the year when the EBU will release the official list of the 2017 Eurovision participating countries.