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News agencies are sources of real, truthful, reliable content, and the support and collaboration between these media institutions are of great importance in the fight against the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and against misinformation, consider the participants in the conference of the Association of the Balkan News Agencies - Southeast Europe (ABNA-SE), with the theme "Media and News Agencies in the Post-Covid era", organized on September 16-19, in Pristina, by KosovaPress.

One of the conclusions of the participants in the meeting in Pristina is that news agencies must benefit from independence, editorial freedom as well as financial support.

The meeting focused on the importance of collaboration between news agencies and mutual support in combating the effects of the pandemic and misinformation.

Armela Krasniqi, who has so far held the position of Director General of ABNA-SE, affirmed that despite all the difficulties faced by news agencies - from cost reductions to financial losses - the quality of the media products delivered has increased.

"People want to receive information as quickly as possible, so we need to identify ways to inform citizens, but at the same time fight the fake-news phenomenon. We need to fight together against misinformation," said Armela Krasniqi.

Secretary General of the European Alliance of News Agencies (EANA) Alexandru Giboi stressed in his speech that news agencies represent through their activity the foundations of democracy, because they are not only providers of fast, "hot" news, but there is a "double check" behind the information transmitted, it is the truth that is being broadcast.

He spoke not only about the challenges faced by news agencies during the pandemic, but also about the advantages they can take advantage of during this period.

"Many years ago, the media looked at news agencies as outdated, but the pandemic crisis brought the news agencies from behind the scenes, on stage. Opportunities arise in times of crisis, and the pandemic period has increased confidence in the media and this is a wave news agencies should take advantage of," Alexandru Giboi added.

According to him, the news agencies have not only the advantage of the quality of the information, but also the advantage of the truthfulness, of the certainty of the delivered information.

The conference in Pristina was attended by delegations of news agencies from the Balkan countries, the aim being to identify ways to collaborate and streamline the mission of accurately informing the public.

Another theme of the conference was the promotion of tourism in the region, in the context in which the tourism sector has been one of the most affected by the pandemic. The participants concluded that tourism is an important factor in economic development, requiring collaboration between the private and state sectors to support this area. AGERPRES (RO - author: Mirela Barbulescu, editor: Mariana Ionescu; EN - editor: Simona Iacob)

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