BBC World Service to launch Farsi TV for Iran

The service, which is expected to launch early in 2008, will complement the BBC’s existing Persian radio and online services for Iran.

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By  Vijaya Cherian Published  October 16, 2006

BBC World Service is to launch a television news and information service in Farsi for Iran. The service will complement the BBC’s existing Persian radio and online services for Iran. The service is expected to launch early in 2008 and will be based in London. It will initially broadcast for eight hours a day, seven days a week, from 17.00 hrs to 01.00 hrs – peak viewing time in Iran. It will be freely available to anyone with a satellite dish or cable connection in the region. Funding for the new service was announced by UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown. The operating cost of £15 million a year will be funded by the UK overnment. This funding will be in addition to BBC World Service’s existing grant-in-aid funding from the UK Government and will have no impact on the current BBC World Service portfolio of services. “The BBC’s Persian radio and online services are well-respected by Iranians, especially by opinion formers,” says Nigel Chapman, BBC World Service director. “As television is increasingly dominating the way millions of Iranian people receive their news, the BBC has proposed to the Foreign Office that we launch a television service in Farsi to complement our existing independent news and information services for Iran on radio and online. Like all BBC services, the new television service will be editorially independent of the UK Government. I am delighted the BBC Farsi television service proposal has been given the go-ahead,” he adds. The channel will cover international and major regional issues. It will also carry multi-media discussion programmes and debates in conjunction with the BBC's Farsi radio and online services.

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