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MCIP spends over 60 million hryvnias on a new media outlet with no audience –

02.10.2023, 13:25

The Ministry of Culture and Information Policy spent over 60 million hryvnias on The Gaze – a media outlet created four months ago. The expenses are likely to increase in the future, according to the team.

"However, most of the content – at least the texts – can hardly be called original; very often they simply repost material from other media," notes.

Of the more than 60 million hryvnias, 11.6 million were allocated to the development and technical support of the platform, and the rest went to the content.

The Gaze is developed and supported by the "Computer Information Technologies" LLC. The company received its first order for UAH 10 million back in 2022 at an open tender, where it was the only participant. This year, the company received an additional UAH 1.6 million contract even without formally bidding – through direct agreement.

"Computer Information Technologies" (CIT) is owned by Oleksandr Yefremov and Serhiy Malomen from Kyiv, who also own the "CIT Group" LLC, the "CITSoft" LLC and the "CITSoft Plus" LLC. These companies have experience in creating large service portals: for instance, it was them who developed the Diya portal for online services at the request of the Ministry of Digital Transformation.

All the content, i.e. news, articles and videos, for The Gaze is produced by third-party contractors selected by a competition committee of four employees of the State Enterprise "MPIU" in early May 2023 based on the results of several creative contests.

All contractors got deals through direct agreements. According to the state procurement portal Prozorro, the value of already signed contracts for video production reached UAH 35 million, and the ones for written news and articles – UAH 11 million. Taking into account the development and support of the site, the total cost of the project has already exceeded UAH 60 million in the four months of its existence.

The journalists could not find out how many people create content for The Gaze, as most contractors refused to provide this information, notes.

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