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Eurovision Song Contest 2018

Eurovision Song Contest 2018 will be organized by the Portuguese public broadcaster Rádio e Televisão de Portugal (RTP). The first meeting for arranging Eurovision Song Contest 2018 in Portugal took place on Monday 15 May 2017, chaired by the Director General of RTP, Nuno Artur Silva. The Semi-final Allocation Draw takes place in January 2018. The allocation draw determines which countries take part in which of the two Semi-finals.

It looks like the contest will most likely take place on the 8th, 10th and 12th of May. In the first week of May, the first semi final would coincide with Labor Day on the 1st of May. This is an official holiday in Portugal, thus the contest will probably not take place in that week.

On Saturday the 19th of May, the German cup final takes place in Berlin. Last year, this was one of the reasons why the contest was not rescheduled a week later, when the contest had to get a new set of dates. The week of the 26th of May is definitely not an option, since the final of the UEFA Champions League will take place on that date. The EBU does not want to have the grand final of Eurovision clash with that event.

In the days after Portugal’s win, RTP’s own evening news program reported that Lisbon would serve as host city. And fans have also assumed that Lisbon is the only city with a realistic shot at this. But RTP has decided on a transparent and democratic bidding process, allowing all cities that have an interest in welcoming Europe next year to plead their case: “We have a lot of commercial interest, but we’re still in the phase of creating the concept,” RTP’s President Gonçalo Reis said in a recent interview.

“We already have a financial model defined, but Eurovision requires the involvement of the host city, tourism boards and an effort to create partnerships with both public and private sponsors.”

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has already suggested the Portuguese broadcaster RTP to chose MEO Arena as the venue for Eurovision 2018, and the Director General of RTP, Nuno Artur Silva, has also expressed the MEO Arena as a likely venue to host Eurovision 2018.

The MEO Arena is perfect for a huge event like Eurovision Song Contest. With a capacity of 20,000 it is one of the largest indoor arenas in the EU. The arena is placed very central in Lisbon with well branched infrastructure.

Jon Ola Sand (EBU Executive Supervisor), talked about the importance of choosing the correct venue. A Venue which meets the requirements for hosting an event the size of the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest. According to Jon Ola Sand, “The venue should be able to accommodate around 10.000 spectators. Enough to be able to have tickets for all national and international fans who want to assist.”

As of the middle of June, 18 countries have already confirmed the participation for the contest. The national broadcasters still have time to confirm their entry for Portugal next year and it is expectedly for almost all of them to do so. As of yet, no country that participated last year officially confirmed their withdrawal from the contest. Only Andorra and Luxembourg confirmed that they will not return to the contest.

Singer Julia Samoilova, whose entry into Ukraine for this year's Eurovision was banned from Kiev, will be the Russian edition of 2018 after Moscow will not participate in this edition because of this dispute, reported EFE.