Slovakia’s national tv channel STV, which is an EBU member, decided to come back to the Eurovision Song Contest for the first time since 1998. STV has announced in a press conference that selections will be held in Bratislava on 8 March and may be preceded by a number of semi finals.
According to Slovakian channel STV, there will be an open call for the song submissions and it will end on 20th of January, 2009. There will probably be a number of semi finals leading to the final, the exact number of which will depend on the number of entries received by STV. The final will be held in Bratislava on 8 March.
The program director of STV, Roman Lipták, stated, "If there is an increased interest from artists, we will also organise a number of semi finals, but the exact number is unknown yet. We would like to hold the semis in our studios in Košice and Banská Bystrica and the final in Bratislava. We will not make a selection among those who will submit an entry, anyone submitting a song will compete in the semi(s)."
Slovakia has competed three times in the contest; in 1994, 1996 and 1998. Despite the bad results Slovakians had, they will be competing for the fourth time. Their best result is 18th, the worst result is 21st and Slovakian is the only language to be used.
When asked by local reporters why STV decided to return to the Eurovision Song Contest, he answered that although there had not been any cooperation with the EBU lately, they are now back in the EBU family. "Eurovision is for us the most important EBU project", he said " we will cooperate in other projects as well but not all as our budget does not permit it." Another reason which led STV back to the contest, according to Mr Liptak, was pressure from local artists who felt at a handicap not being able to participate.