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Deutsche Welle and Radio France Internationale present new joint initiative in Brussels

EURANET: European media project puts emphasis on fair and balanced information and increased dialog.

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Press conference for the launch of "EURANET" by Margot Wallström, Vice-President of the EC, Erik Betterman, Director General of Deutsche Welle.

Sixteen radio broadcasters from 13 EU countries are working together on the European media project EURANET, which aims to improve reporting from and about Europe and to foster the development of European openness. The participating broadcasters want to work closely together to develop innovative radio and Internet services and thereby allow for the understanding of European ideas.

In the presence of Margot Wallström, Vice-President of the European Commission, Erik Bettermann, Director General of Deutsche Welle, presented the project with his colleague Antoine Schwarz from Radio Internationale (RFI) on Tuesday, February 26 in Brussels. EURANET will be financially sponsored by the EU Commission over a five-year period with a total of 5.8 million Euros. By 2013, additional radio broadcasters from the 27 EU nations should be integrated into the network. Bettermann also emphasized that EURANET reports should be “completely independent editorially” – despite receiving financial support from the EU Commission.

Based on the initiative from Deutsche Welle and RFI, media experts from several European countries developed a concept for close cooperation between international, national, regional and local broadcasters. “EURANET makes the exchange of journalistically ambitious reporting from different European regions considerably easier. In addition, partners are better connected and will be able to realize cooperative projects easier in the future. EURANET will show the similarities that countries share without disregarding the differences,” said Bettermann at a presentation to journalists in Brussels. “By supplying realistic information, the creators want to contribute to a stronger ‘we’ feeling within the European Union.” Bettermann and his French colleague also pointed out that EURANET should also lead to cultural dialog and societal discourse.

Initially EURANET will broadcast in five main languages: English, Spanish, French, German and Polish. Five additional languages – Bulgarian, Greek, Portuguese, Romanian and Hungarian – will be broadcast on existing frequencies of participating broadcasters. Ultimately the aim is for EURANET to air its content in all 23 EU languages. EURANET will focus on multilingual and interactive audio services that should arouse interest from European neighbors and improve mutual understanding.

Currently, the network includes 16 broadcasters from 13 EU countries, including Radio Polskie, the Spanish broadcaster Punto Radio, as well as Radio Netherlands Wereldomroep. Other participants include broadcasters from Bulgaria, Greece, Portugal and the Czech Republic. Every partner can access the expertise of the others by exchanging program modules using an audio platform from the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).

Christoph Jumpelt

Christoph Jumpelt

Head of Corporate Communications and Spokesperson

T. +49.228.429-2041
christoph.jumpelt@dw.com

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