China will launch a new round of efforts to provide and improve
TV broadcasting services for people in rural areas, in an effort to
help villagers gain better TV signal quality and wider
"This is the most important mission for our broadcasting
business and we should all put it on the top of our agenda," Zhang
Haitao, vice minister of the State Administration of Radio, Film
and Television (SARFT), was quoted by China Daily as
China's central government has issued the 11th Five-year
Guidelines for 2006-2010 and narrowing the gap between urban and
rural regions has become a top priority. Providing public services
such as broadcasting and telecommunication is one of the major
China already has a TV broadcasting penetration rate of 95
percent, and the rate for radio service is also about the same
figure, but there are still 60 million families in remote areas
with no access to either.
The central government initiated the
Xinjiang Project in 2000, which extended TV and radio
broadcasting services to a total of eight provinces and autonomous
regions in west China. About 7.6 billion yuan (US$940 million) has
so far been spent on the project.
In 2005 alone, China invested 800 million yuan (US$99 million)
to help people in 86,000 villages in underdeveloped regions to
However, for many people with access to TV or radio signals,
they can only watch one or two channels with poor signal
The central government wants to launch a new round of the
Cuncuntong Project (the project of providing TV and radio services
for villages) this year to let more people have access to
broadcasting with good quality.
As many as 42 million people in more than 300,000 villages are
expected to benefit from the project.
Although the amount of the investment has not been decided, it
is estimated that tens of billions of yuan will be needed, based on
previous scales, according to Zhang.
(Xinhua News Agency March 21, 2006)