(Bloomberg) -- Slovak media denounced a plan by the ruling coalition to impose a special tax on private broadcasters as an attack against the free press.

Under a proposal that Finance Minister Igor Matovic’s Ordinary People party submitted to parliament this week, the government will impose a special levy on the country’s largest private radio and television stations. 

The proposal underscores concerns regarding media freedom in a country where the murder of an investigative reporter last decade triggered mass protests that toppled the government. Politicians, including Matovic frequently spar with journalists and say they are spreading lies.

While the proposal envisions raising more budget revenue, broadcasters said it was an attempt to pressure media. They compared it to measures taken in neighboring Hungary, where Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s administration has created the largest propaganda machine in Europe by boosting outlets that favor his government and marginalizing independent media.

“We consider this proposal to be a political attempt to increase pressure on free private media,” the Association of Television Broadcasters in Slovakia said in a statement on its website on Thursday. They said the measure “won’t help the state budget in any significant way” but will financially hurt broadcasters.

The motion will now face a vote in the assembly, where the government has lost its majority and needs the support of opposition parties to push through legislation.

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