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Wed 9 Aug 2006 04:00 AM

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ArabSat attracts new broadcasters

Arab Satellite Communications Organisation (ArabSat) has forged satellite transmission agreements with a number of broadcasters, including WRN, BBC World Service and Mlive.

Arab Satellite Communications Organisation (ArabSat) has forged satellite transmission agreements with a number of broadcasters, including WRN, BBC World Service and Mlive. The Association for International Broadcasting has also reported that ArabSat is planning to invest US $700 million in new satellites to increase transmission capacity.

Arabsat’s deal with WRN allows listeners in the Middle East to tune into a new Arabic language radio station made up of content from around the world. WRN sources content from the Arabic departments of many of the world’s leading public radio broadcasters, including Radio Canada, Korea’s KBS World Radio, Voice of Russia, Radio Romania International and Vatican Radio. Other international stations are reported to be on the way.

“When looking for a satellite partner in the Middle East that was able to deliver our new station directly to millions of households, we naturally turned to Arabsat,” said Tim Ayris, marketing manager, WRN. “The launch of our 24/7 Arabic language station, Sawt Al Alam, or Voice of the World, will let listeners tune into fresh global perspectives from different nations.”

Mlive has agreed a five year deal with ArabSat to broadcast on its BADR satellites. As well as covering core markets in the Middle East and North Africa, Mlive will also extend its reach towards sub-Saharan viewers tuned to 26°E. BBC World Service has also decided to increase its radio coverage of the Middle East and surrounding regions via ArabSat. SAccording to the Association for International Broadcasting, ArabSat will spend US $700 million on four new satellites in the next three years. The first will be built by France’s EADS Astrium at a cost of around US $100 million and will launch in 2008.

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