News on the hour - Digital shortwave transmission to East Asia and Europe
The English Service of Deutsche Welle (DW), Germany's international broadcaster will experience the biggest facelift in its 40 year history with the start of summer time on 30 March 2003. There will be a substantial increase in the number of daily news bulletins from 13 to 24. "News on the hour will be our visiting card," says Uta Thofern, Head of the English Service.
Newslink, the flagship current affairs programme, will be broadcast round the clock in the form of special editions tailored to meet the requirements of different audiences around the world. This means there will be three live editions of Newslink for the Asia-Pacific Region, two for Africa, with repeats, two for North America and Europe every weekday. Uta Thofern: "They will highlight not only top world, European and German stories but also news and developments in the respective target regions. In future we will be able to cover breaking stories faster and in greater depth than ever before."
Changes will also be made to the feature programming with an increased emphasis on rebroadcasting successful programmes such as "Arts on the Air", "Living in Germany", and "Inspired Minds". The same applies to "Money Talks" or the science programme "Spectrum". "Africa Kaleidoscope", the weekly programme for and about Africa, that tackles the latest stories and developments will have a sister programme, that means two new thirty minute programmes for Africa. Moreover "Development" will finally get a weekly slot and more attention will be paid to the environment. "In future our team of feature editors will have more time to devote to their successful co-operation with organisations like German Technical Co-operation, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and UNESCO," Thofern says.
To date DW-RADIO's English Service has broadcast to all of its target audiences via the shortwave. As of 30 March 2003 this policy will change. In future Deutsche Welle will take into account the conditions prevailing on individual media markets and respond to new technical developments in the most appropriate fashion. DW also plans to introduce digital shortwave transmissions to East Asia and Europe with analogue shortwave transmissions to Asia and Africa continuing for the foreseeable future. However, shortwave broadcasts to the highly developed media markets of North America and Australia and New Zealand will be terminated. Instead, DW will focus on expanding the number of radio stations, like Canadian Broadcasting Corporation or ABC News Radio, who rebroadcast DW-RADIO's programmes successfully. Listeners in those regions will of course still be able to hear us via satellite or by means of our Internet page at www.dw-world.de/English
21 January 2003