News Agencies and Newspapers

News agencies: China has two news agencies—Xinhua (New China) News Agency and China News Service. Xinhua is the nation’s official news agency, with its head office in Beijing. Its major task is to collect and distribute important news and information concerning politics, economy and culture in both China and the rest of the world. In 1944 Xinhua News Agency began overseas broadcasting in English, and in 1948 its first overseas branch was established. Beginning in the 1950s, Xinhua News Agency has gradually developed into a major international news agency. Its head office is composed of the Overseas News Department, the International News Department and other departments. It has major branch offices in the Asian-Pacific region, the Middle East, Latin America, Africa and other regions, and more than 100 smaller branches in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the Macao Special Administrative Region and abroad. Xinhua News Agency now releases news, news photos and features abroad in Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish, Arabic and other languages. It has offices in Hong Kong and overseas to publish news releases, offices in Hong Kong, Paris and London to transmit photos, offices in Asia, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, North America, and Western and Eastern Europe to supply news releases by telex to the local newspapers, radio stations and news agencies in many languages, and special communication networks between the head office and its branches at home and abroad. Xinhua News Agency has signed agreements with more than 80 overseas news agencies and opinion and news departments to exchange news and news photos.

With its head office in Beijing, China News Service mainly supplies news to overseas Chinese, foreign citizens of Chinese origin, and compatriots in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the Macao Special Administrative Region, and Taiwan. Established in 1952, it formally began to broadcast and airmail news items on October 1 of the same year.

China News Service has branches and reporting stations in all provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and the Macao Special Administrative Region, and branches in the United States, Japan, France, Australia and other countries.

As a comprehensive news agency, China News Service has modern and diversified news transmission methods. It covers a wide range of news business, mainly supplying news dispatches and photos, special dispatches, features and audio-video products to overseas Chinese media and overseas Chinese organizations. As an important organization for news exchanges between the mainland and Taiwan, its journalists have traveled to Taiwan to cover news and it has received journalists from Taiwan.

Newspapers: In 1950, there were 205 newspapers in China, putting out more than 400 million copies a year. Beginning in the 1980s, newspapers have developed rapidly, and a multi-level and multi-format newspaper structure, with the Party newspapers at the core, has been formed. Apart from the Party newspapers and mass organization newspapers, there are daily, evening, morning and weekly newspapers published according to their distribution time, and peasants’, workers’, enterprise and professional newspapers published according to their readers’ professions. Of these newspapers, some focus on transmitting economic, scientific and technological information, and some aim at satisfying cultural needs. According to statistics, by 1999, 20.1 billion copies of national-and provincial-level newspapers had been published. Currently, the main national newspapers in China are the People’s Daily and its overseas edition, Guangming Daily, Daily Economic News, Liberation Army Daily, Chinese Youth News, Chinese Women’s News, Chinese Education News, China Sports News, Workers’ Daily, Peasants’ Daily, Science and Technology Daily and the English-language China Daily.

On June 8, 1998, the two large newspaper groups Guangming Daily and Daily Economic News were listed on China’s two stock exchanges, thus becoming the first national-level newspaper groups in China. On July 25 of the same year, the Shanghai Wen Hui Bao and Xinmin Evening News joint newspaper group was set up in Shanghai. This was an important measure to promote news reforms, and marked a new development stage for Chinese newspapers.



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Last updated: 2000-07-13.