Posts tagged ‘China Radio International’

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Patriotic Pep Talk: Angry, angrier, scientific

zhuchiren_04
Click picture for CRI video

The following is a transcript of a video by China Radio International (yes, China’s former foreign radio  broadcaster still exists somehow – CGTN in English and in Russian, CRI in Chinese).

Links within blockquotes added during translation.

大家好!这里是『国际三分钟』。 我是爱丽。 Hello! This is “International – Three Minutes”. I’m Ai Li.
继芯片法案之后,美国又准备在生物科技领域出招了。当地时间12日美国总统拜登签署了一项鼓励美国生物技术生产和研究的行政命令,旨在促进美国的生物制造。多家美媒体国解读此举仍然是『针对中国』。 Following its CHIPS and Science Act, America is now preparing to make a move in the field of biotechnology. On September 12, U.S. President Biden signed an executive order on a National Biotechnology and Biomanufacturing Initiative, aimed at promoting American biomanufacturing. A number of U.S. media read this as yet another move “targeted at China”.
五角大楼说的更为直接。14日白宫举办生物技术和生物制造峰会,与会人员包括国家安全顾问沙利文,和国防部副部长凯瑟琳·希克斯等人。 The Pentagon is even more straightforward. On September 14, the White House held a biomanufacturing summit which included national security advisor Jake Sullivan and deputy defense secretary and Kathleen Hicks.
希克斯在谈及投资生物技术对国防部的意义时表示,我们知道像中国这样的战略竞争对手也在优先考虑这些技术。他们想取代美国的领导地位,他们想挑战我们的竞争力。 Discussing the significance of biotechnology for national defense, Hicks said that it was known that strategic competitors like China were also considering these technologies a priority. [China] wanted to replace American leadership and challenge its competitiveness.
实际上,美国拥有世界上最强大的生物技术产业,在全球研发应用设施,基础研究方面,美国一直处于优先地位。2020年QS大学排名显示,在生命科学与医学排名前200的高校中,美国有61家入选。2019年全球市场排名前10名的生物医药公司中,美国占6家。截至2021年,在全球所有59座P4级别生物实验室中,美国独占13 – 14座。 In reality, America has the strongest global position in the biotechnological industry. In terms of R&D facilities and fundamental research, America always ranks first in global research. In the 2020 QS World University Rankings, as for life sciences and medical science rankings of the first 200 universities, 61 were American. In the [or a?] 2019 global market ranking, among the first ten biological drug companies, six were American. By 2021, U.S. P4-level biolaboratories dominated globally with 13 or 14 labs.
另外,在生物科技专利数量,专利活跃度,专利资产指数和竞争影响力等方面的领域优势,美国都很明显。中国短期内并不会对美国生物科技的全球地位产生威胁。 Also, as for the number of patents, patent activity, patent investment indices and competitive influence etc., America also has obvious advantages. China won’t be a threat to America’s global number-one position in biotechnology in the short term.
拜登政府之后已把目光转向生物技术。目的在于这背后巨大的经济利益更在于维护其科技霸权。 The Biden administration has since turned its attention to biotechnology. That’s because there are enormous economic interests behind it to protect their technological hegemony even better.
现在生物科技被广泛应用到各个领域。比如说,医疗方面的生物制药,农业方面的有机肥农药,工业方面的化学品甚至燃料,等等都跟生物科技有关。论对国家经济发展影响力,生物科技比之芯片领域毫不逊色。 Biotechnology is applied in a wide range of areas. For example, biological medication production for medical treatment, organic fertilizers and pesticides, industrial chemicals and even fuel are all related to biotechnology. Talking about influence on national economic development, biotechnology matters no less than the field of chips.
近些年中国在生物技术领域确实取得了一定的成绩。目前我们已经初涉形成门类齐全功能完备的生物经济产业体系,在生物医药生物育种,生物材料,生物能源等产业部门已经产生具有影响力的创新型企业。比如科创板上市企业中,生物企业占比就达1/3。 China has, in recent years, achieved certain successes. Currently, we have started shaping a category of fully functional and faultless biotechnological economic and industrial system. In the industrial sections of medicine, biomaterials and bioenergy etc., influential innovative companies have been created. For example, among the companies entering the Shanghai Stock Exchange STAR Market, one third are biotech companies.
从战略角度来看,机械化曾经让英国称霸世界。信息化又让美国问鼎世界第一强国。美国非常担心将来如果生物技术产业化使中国实现超越,自身的国际地位就将不保。也正是基于此美国有些急眼想走老路子,想通过制裁封锁中国生物科技领域的进步达到稳固其全球霸权的目的。 Seen from a strategic point of view, mechanizaton once helped Britain to declare itself the global hegemon. Informatization made America the global number one. America is really worried that in future, if biotechnological production helps China to overtake it, it may not be able to maintain its international position. It is also therefore that America is anxious to take the old path and wants to solidify its global hegemony by putting sanctions on the progress of China’s biotechnological sector.
『美国之音』就报道称,拜登新行政令被人为是对上个月签署的『芯片法案』作出的一项补充。美国『财富』杂志称,拜登的新行政令给美中经济竞争在添新战线。总之新政令是一个『风向表』,他预示着美国对中国的技术限制已经从芯片能源扩大到了生物领域。 According to the “Voice of America”, Biden’s new executive order is believed to be supplementary to the “CHIPS and Science Act”. American “Fortune” magazine said that Biden’s new executive order will add a new battlefront to U.S.-Chinese economic competition. In short, the new executive order is a “wind direction indicator”, foretelling that America’s technological restrictions on China are now expanding from the chip energy field to the field of biotechnology.
按照美国行事风格我们可以预测,如果此次新政令没有达到美方的预期效果,那很有可能像在芯片领域一样。他们会继续寻求对中国的精准打击。遗憾的是,生物领域本可以是一个美方有技术,中方有市场的合作领域,而美国现在非要打破这个平衡。 Because of America’s style of action, we can predict that if this new executive order doesn’t have the effect expected by the U.S., it will most probably resemble that of the CHIPS and Science Act. They will continue to seek for accurate strikes at China. What’s unfortunate is that biotechnology couldbe a field of cooperation, with the U.S. having the technologoy and with China having the market. But the U.S. has inisted on breaking this balance.
奈何。俄罗斯『独立报』评论称,对于美国不断升级的限制措施,中国有不同的应对举措,但最终这将促使中国加大对科技研发的投入,并努力确保独立性。说得不错。我们能做要做的。就是利用好巨大的市场优势,培育,挖掘,吸纳生物领域顶尖人才,加速推进生物科技和产业自立自强! Nothing doing. Russia’s “Nezavisimaya Gazeta” writes in an editorial that China has different options to respond, but in the end, this will induce China to increase its commitment to technological R&D and make efforts to ensure its independence. Well said. We can and we will. Just make good use of the advantages of a giant market. Nurture, unleash and attract top-notch talents in the field of biotechnology, and speed up the promotion of biotechnology and bioproduction!

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Related

“Cold War mentality”, Asia Financial
And now, no news, Nov 20, 2021
By any other name, March 30, 2018
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Monday, April 18, 2022

Cute Pandas and Lovely Tanks – CRI and CGTN cover Russia’s War in Ukraine

CRI Russian / CGTN Russian war coverage

How is our motherland doing, comrades?
CRI Russian / CGTN Russian war coverage

I don’t speak Russian, but it seems that China Radio International’s (CRI) coverage leaves nothing to be desired when you want to be kept up to date with your country’s war in Ukraine (without too much disturbing news, I suppose). The first 25 minutes of CRI’s Russian program at 17:00 UTC on Sunday were all about Donbas, with a CGTN correspondent reporting from there.

CRI might have dispatched its own correspondents a few years ago, when the station was actually an organization in its own right, and quite a fiefdom at that. CRI’s then director, Wang Gengnian, even delivered his own annual new-year address.

Some adjustments for synergy were called for, and the central committee delivered, early in 2018, by amalgamating CRI, CPBS (domestic radio) and television into a “Central Radio and Television Network” (中央广播电视总台).   Some three years later, many CRI language broadcasts on shortwave were replaced by mere music loops or endless repetitions of always-the-same cultural programs.

Taiwan’s government appeared to have similar plans for Radio Taiwan International (RTI) – not to take them off the airwaves, but to create an tri-medial organization, integrating RTI, Taiwan’s national newsagency CNA, and public television. Instead, RTI got a new director-general, and its Spanish, French and Korean services returned to shortwave from a mere online existence.

Now, questions are occasionally asked which plan for RTI was better – the one devised in 2018 or the one actually implemented in 2019 and onward. In my view, starting an international television channel on the one hand as is done with “Taiwan+” and keeping RTI as a station focused on audiences in different languages looks like a comparatively wise choice.

For one, RTI might provide a pool of foreign-language speakers for television if need be. Also, if I go by my own fondness for radio, “Taiwan+” isn’t for me, and never will be. In fact, it’s nice to be spoken to in my first language by RTI’s German department.

But above all, developments at Radio Japan and CRI aren’t looking really promising. At Radio Japan, English is only broadcast on shortwave three times a day, and as for the news, that’s only a soundtrack from NHK’s global  English-language television channel. (You won’t even know who’s speaking at times, because obviously, you are missing out on the subtitles.) And while I don’t know what they are talking about in Russian on China’s foreign media, I seem to notice that there is a similar problem with the CGTN correspondent’s contributions that are also used by CRI, i. e. by “Central Radio and Television Network” foreign-radio channel. The correspondent, Kirill Volkov, seems to interview a number of people for his video productions, but as a listener, you can only guess who he is talking to.

It is easy to think that CRI’s German service has lost some of its (not too numerous anyway) German listeners after leaving shortwave, along with many other CRI language services. The German editorial department’s current trimedial attempts at agitating their listeners in China’s favor may be good for a laugh every now and then, but contrary to CRI’s radio productions in the past, these days’ online content is useless.

20220130_dreckskerle_20220126

“Some US politicians behave more and more like
dirty swines!” -CRI German’s
“sharp commentary” online, January 2022

In that regard, one has to wonder why RTI has recently been busy with grandstanding of this kind. Reportedly, what really happened is that the same half-hour Russian program in Russian already in existence for Europe has been rebroadcast for an additional 30-minutes time slot on another frequency.

Stunts like the above seem to suggest that RTI’s directors are worried that the government might cut RTI’s budget.

That shouldn’t happen. If Taiwan’s government wants to raise its country’s “international visibility”, it can’t do without RTI, and it can’t do without shortwave. At least, Taipei better wait how “Taiwan+” develops before making cuts to the foreign-radio budget.

Saturday, November 20, 2021

China Radio International: And Now, No News

There are basically two kinds of program formats carried by China Radio International (CRI) now: those with, and those without news and current affairs coverage. Regionally, you can (roughly) draw aline between East and West, with only the former still getting CRI news in regional languages.

Chinese news item, 2019

They still do speak English

The mention of target areas does not imply that there may not be other target areas for certain languages, too. As for Esperanto, for example, I only listened to the broadcast to Europe, but Europe may  not be CRI Esperanto’s only target area.

This list is not at all exhaustive; there are many more CRI language services I haven’t recently listened to.

Language Target areas News
Vietnamese Vietnam Yes
Indonesian Indonesia yes
Malaysian Malaysia yes
Japanese Japan yes
Filipino Philippines yes
Khmer Cambodia yes
Bengali Bengal yes
Thai Thailand yes
Mongolian Mongolia yes
Urdu Pakistan, India, Nepal yes
Hausa Niger, Nigeria yes
Pashto Afghanistan, Pakistan yes
Esperanto Europe no
Romanian Romania no
Italian Italy no
Bulgarian Bulgaria no
Czech Czech Republic no
Polish Poland no
Serbian Serbia & regional no
Hungarian Hungary & regional no
German Austria & regional no

Programs without news / current affairs are usually filled up with music. Some language services without news add explanatory announcements to their music programs, but others run completely without spoken words.
Language services that may be considered global ones – Chinese, English, Russian, or Spanish, still have news in their programs, and maybe cultural programs, too, but CRI’s Portuguese service hasn’t.

Esperanto broadcasts a cultural program with lots of talk, but no news or current affairs either.

The mere-music programs may run without day-to-day updates. The genres vary, however. You get some revolutionary opera on frequencies that were used for Serb programs in the past, or rock and pop music on what was once the Czech service.
The replacement for the German service is particularly mean: typical “China restaurant” dining music.
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Related

Program reductions, Nov 25, 2019
CCTV, CRI, CPBS, March 30, 2018
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Useful links

Shortwave Info
Kiwi SDR
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Monday, November 25, 2019

Program Reductions at China Radio International (CRI)

While China Radio International‘s (CRI) airtime remains undampened, program hours appear to be going down, reports Radio Berlin Brandenburg‘s (RBB) media magazine. RBB points to CRI Portuguese as a striking example: the broadcasts have only contained music and references to CRI’s online pages for some time, and the Portuguese-language online pages contain only single articles, but not the usual program packages. Programs in Polish, Serbian and Albanian still contained short news readings, but only music apart from that, according to random checks.

CRI German, April 1 schedule

CRI German, April 1 schedule

The German program seems to have seen some cuts, too. There used to be news broadcasts at the beginning of every transmission, but I haven’t heard any news or current affairs on Saturdays and Sundays recently, and today’s (Monday) two-hour program didn’t carry any news or current affairs either.

CRI’s most recent schedule was published online on April 1 this year, shortly after the beginning of the summer frequency plan. Apparently, it wasn’t updated when the HFCC’s current B19 transmission schedule went into effect a few weeks ago.

According to the April 1 plan, the two-hours German programs, from Monday through Friday, started with a news and current affairs program of 15 minutes, (“CRI Aktuell” / “CRI Aktuell mit Hintergrund”), 35 minutes of feature programs (“CRI Panorama”), followed by a language course of ten minutes, and an hour of cultural programs (“CRI Kulturcollage”).

On Saturdays and Sundays, a five-minutes news program (“CRI Aktuell”) was followed by 45 minutes of “CRI Panorama”, followed by a ten-minutes language course and 55 minutes of “Kulturcollage”.

Today, just as recently on Saturdays and Sundays, there were 50 minutes of “CRI Panorama” and the usual ten-minutes language course. The second hour was a repetition of exactly the same content.

CRI Chinese and CRI English still carry news and current affairs programs.

Back to Radio Berlin Brandenburg’s media magazine. They wonder why the shortwave frequencies which used to carry CRI Portuguese, Polish, Serbian, or Albanian, are still in use.

The answer may be that co-channelling (a slightly more sophisticated way of jamming undesired broadcasters abroad than applying the “Firedrake”) is easier when you have many shortwave frequencies in use. Abandoned frequencies could otherwise be collected by Taiwan, from where both national broadcaster Radio Taiwan International (RTI) and Chinese opposition broadcasters like “Sound of Hope” (希望之聲) are broadcasting to China on shortwave.

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Related

By any other Name, March 30, 2018
Innovative Guidance of Public Opinion, Nov 17, 2015
Rumors about CRI, April 13, 2015

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Friday, March 30, 2018

CCTV, CRI, CPBS: by any other (English) Name

Bloomberg appears to have been the first media company outside China to publish the news, and the Financial Times followed with an article about the creation of “a new broadcasting behemoth”, designed to “broaden [China’s] global news footprint and bolster its soft power abroad,” still on March 21.

While the CCP may have the means to feed more than one propaganda monster, the new organization will apparently be the result of a “merger” of China Central Television (CCTV), China Radio International (CRI) and China National Radio (CNR, or, in Chinese, Central People’s Broadcasting Station/CPBS).

But this may not have as far-reaching implications for the three organizations as it first seems.
[Update – See bottom of this post for updates – the implications appear to be quite far-reaching, actually.]

Call it a deer: Radio Beijing QSL (1990) – the broadcaster’s current name is China Radio International

“Voice of China”, the planned “merged” organization’s future name, isn’t necessarily an imitation of the “Voice of America”, as supposed by the FT author. Central People’s Broadcasting Station’s first channel (there are nine channels altogether) has long been referred to as “Voice of China” (zhongguo zhisheng), but always in Chinese, while the station’s occasional English-language identification announcements have simply referred to the network, as “China National Radio”. In its “about us”, CPBS/CNR, on their website, refer to their first channel as “zhongguo zhisheng” in Chinese, and as “News Radio” in English.

On shortwave, China’s “voice” frequently co-channels undesired broadcasts from abroad – it kills two birds by with one stone, “telling the good China story” and hooting down less desirable stories.

The document announcing the merger of the three media organizations – Deepening Reform of Party and State Institutions – was released by the CCP’s Central Committee, unabridgedly published by Xinhua newsagency on March 21, and republished, among others, by the Chinese State Council’s website.

The naming of China’s media has been somewhat messy for decades – “China National Radio” for a foreign audience and “Central People’s Broadcasting Station” for the Chinese-speaking audience, a lot of tampering with CCTV (China Central Television) or, in its foreign guise, as CCTV News, or as CCTV 9, or as CCTV English), and (perhaps the messiest bit) China Radio International’s (CRI) strategy of “borrowing boats” abroad.

The Central People’s Broadcasting Station/CPBS) was given the English handle of “China National Radio” in 1998, while in Chinese, it has always remained CPBS (zhongyang renmin guangbo diantai).

According to the Deepening Reform of Party and State Institutions document, the Chinese-English double-naming remains the approach of choice. While all three organizations – CCTV, CRI and CPBS (CNR) are going to retain their traditional names at home, they will be referred to as “Voice of China” in English.

If that means that CRI listeners will listen to the “Voice of China”, die “Stimme Chinas”, la “Voix de la Chine” and to “zhongguo zhisheng” (CRI has a Chinese service, too) remains to be seen.

The China Media Project (CMP) at the University of Hong Kong picked up the merger story on March 22, one day after it had first been reported. They provide a full translation of the portions of the Program dealing with media and public opinion. In the leading in to their translation, the CMP points out that

… China Central Television was previously overseen by the General Administration of Press, Publications, Radio, Film and Television (previously just SARFT), a department under the State Council. The super-network will now be situated as a state-sponsored institution, or shiye danwei (事业单位), directly under the State Council, and directly under the supervision of the Central Propaganda Department.

The sections of the document (as translated by CMP) also arrange for a transfer of the General Administration of Press, Publications, Radio, Film and Television’s (SARFT) responsibilities to the Central Propaganda Department.

But for CCTV, CRI and CPBS, the biggest (real) changes don’t appear to be about organization. Shen Haixiong, Wang Gengnian and Yan Xiaoming may well keep their jobs and status, provided that they always make the right ideological adjustments.

Update 1 [April 2, 2018]

CRI online, March 21, 2018, editor: Yang Lei

2018-03-21 | 来源:国际在线 | 编辑:杨磊

CRI online news: In the morning of March 21, Central People’s Broadcasting Station, China Central Television, and China Radio International held a mid-level cadre meeting and announced a decision by the Central Committee to establish to form the Central Radio and Television Station  [in People’s Daily’s English translation: Central Radio and Television Network] and its leadership. Comrade Shen Haixiong is to serve as the Central Radio and Television Station’s director and party secretary.

国际在线消息:3月21日上午,中央人民广播电台、中央电视台、中国国际广播电台召开中层干部大会,宣布中央关于组建中央广播电视总台和领导班子任职的决定。慎海雄同志任中央广播电视总台台长、党组书记。

The organization’s deputy director Zhou Zuyi read out the Central Committee’s decision and delivered a speech. Central propaganda department standing vice minister Wang Xiaohui presided over the meeting and delivered a speech.

中组部副部长周祖翼宣读中央决定并讲话,中宣部常务副部长王晓晖主持会议并讲话。

According to a Beijing Daily article published online on March 28, Yan Xiaoming, who used to head CPBS, will serve as the new organization’s deputy director, while Wang Gengnian, formerly CRI’s director, has retired.

Wang will reportedly be 62 in May this year. Online encyclopedia Baike says that he joined the CCP in May 1986. He was CRI’s director from 2004 until last month. He was also CRI’s party secretary.

Update 2 [April 5, 2018]

This article by the South China Morning Post (SCMP) puts the merger of domestic and foreign radio and television into perspective: upgrading the CCP’s “leading groups” (领导小组) to commissions, [t]he offices in charge of religious and overseas Chinese affairs now .. under the United Front Work Department, responsible for overseas liaison work, merging the Chinese Academy of Governance with the Central Party School, or the creation of a “central education body” over the education ministry for “improving political education in schools and universities”.

In general, the party takes more direct control in several fields, sidestepping the government (as seems to be the case with the “central education body”). In another article of the same day, March 21/22, the SCMP noted that

China is to broaden the scope of a controversial Communist Party department responsible for its overseas liaison work to include ethnic and religious affairs.

The consolidation of the United Front Work Department is part of a restructure of party agencies announced on Wednesday. It will take over the duties of state agencies overseeing ethnic and religious affairs, as well as the overseas Chinese portfolio.

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Notes

If China Copyright and Media (a great resource if you look for the CCP’s/PRC’s bureaucratic output) isn’t faster, I might summarize the document sometime during Easter.

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Updates / Related

十九届三中全会要点, CD, March 1, 2018
Foreign Experts wanted, May 2, 2016

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Thursday, March 22, 2018

Argentine Radio to the World: “Universal Topics”

As part of its “National People’s Congress 1rst plenary session” coverage, China Radio International (CRI) also quotes Adrián Korol, director of RAE, Argentine Radio Nacional’s international radio station.

CRI online, Yin Xiaotong and Li Mingqi reporting — On 13th of March, the “People’s Republic of China Supervision Law (draft)” has been proposed for the National People’s Congress first plenary session’s consideration. As an important environment for national legislation against corruption and for deepening the national supervision organizational reform, the supervision law (draft) deliberations haven’t only lead to heated debate at home, but have also attracted foreign media attention.

国际在线报道(记者尹晓通、李明其):3月13日,《中华人民共和国监察法(草案)》提请十三届全国人大一次会议审议。作为国家反腐败立法和深化国家监察体制改革的重要一环,监察法(草案)的提审不仅在国内引发热议,同样也吸引了外国媒体人的关注。

The director of Argentine National Radio’s foreign broadcasting station, Adrían Korol, believes that corruption has become one of the problems faced by all mankind. China’s supervision law offers important experience for Latin American countries to learn from. “I believe that (this proposed draft) is absolutely necessary, and marks another important step by China on its road of fighting against corruption. Undoubtedly, corruption is currently one of the major issues for all humankind to confront.”

阿根廷国家电台对外台台长阿德里昂•克罗尔认为,腐败已成为全人类共同面临的难题之一,中国的监察法对拉美国家具有重要的借鉴意义,“我认为(这项草案提交审议)是非常有必要的,标志着中国在反腐败道路上又迈出了重要的一步。毫无疑问,目前腐败是全人类共同面临的重大问题之一。

“For many years, corruption has pervaded all aspects of life in most Latin American countries. Fighting against corruption is very important, because corruption has globalized. All countries need to learn other countries’ innovative and efficiently carried-out experience, and match these with their own realities. To propose this supervision draft to the Natonal People’s Congress will undoubtedly be influential.  It will become a sample of how to confront, strike and defeat corruption, it offers important experience for Latin America and countries in many other regions to learn from.”

很多年来,腐败问题已经渗透到拉美绝大多数国家的各个领域。反腐败斗争非常重要,因为腐败已经实现全球化,各国需要学习其他国家具有创新性的、行之有效的反腐经验,再与自身实际相结合。提交到全国人大审议的这份监察法草案无疑将产生重要影响,它将被作为如何面对、打击和战胜腐败问题的样本,对拉美地区和很多其他国家都具有借鉴意义。”

Korol visited China and had cooperation talks with China Radio International earlier this month.

RAE programs are broadcast via WRMI (Florida, USA) and Kall-Krekel (Germany), and through the internet. If sent by ordinary mail, reception reports on shortwave broadcasts are confirmed with a special QSL card in Argentina’s national colors – click picture for more info.

RAE carries a short podcast by Korol, as he addresses RAE listeners from Beijing. My Spanish is rather poor – translation errors are therefore not unlikely, and corrections are welcome:

Hello, friends of Radio Argentina to the World, and greetings from China. I’m Adrián Korol and I’m here on invitation by CRI, Radio China International, to talk personally on a cooperation agreement on which we are working, and about our country, its people, and culture. These are important days here in the People’s Republic of China, for what is called the “two sessions”, a series of meetings of the representatives of the people, where proposals on issues are dealt with which are fundamentally important for life in this country. The two sessions also deal with many universal topics, such as the environment, or the struggle against corruption, something very visible in many parts of Latin America and the world. A topic that catches attention, and positively so, is the eradication of poverty, which happens quite rapidly. There’s also the reform of the constitution as another major issue in the two sessions which are taking place here in Beijing.

Korol also refers to cooperation talks already underway between Argentine television and China’s ministry of communications, and points out three major points of (envisaged) cooperation between RAE and CRI:

[…] content, training, and technology. These topics will have an important effect on RAE, our international service, which completes its sixtieth year this year.

According to some written context added to the podcast, RAE writes that Radio Nacional’s executive director Ana Gerschenson appointed Korol to try to get RAE included into Argentine Television’s (RTA) cooperation with China Central Television (CCTV).

Korol was also quoted by China Daily‘s Chinese online edition (中国日报网), along with media workers from Angola, Australia, and Pakistan:

In an interview, Argentine National Radio’s reporter Adrián Korol said: “I’m from Argentina, and therefore very interested in the direction of relations between China and Latin America. China has left a deep impression on me, and I want to understand the future development between China and Argentina.”

阿根廷国家广播电台记者阿德里昂克罗尔在接受采访时说:“我来自阿根廷,所以我非常关心中国和拉丁美洲的关系走向。中国给我留下深刻印象,我想了解中阿的未来发展方向。”

Asked about his impression of foreign minister Wang Yi, Adrián Korol said that he liked him.

在被问到对外交部长王毅的印象时,阿德里昂克罗尔表示,自己很喜欢他。

Adrián Korol also said that he liked China, and even though he had only come from the other side of the world for the first time, he felt a warmth as if he was at home.

阿德里昂克罗尔进一步表示,他很喜欢中国,虽然是第一次从地球的另一端来到这里,但就感觉跟待在家里一样温暖。

Huanqiu Shibao also carried the story.

Korol’s remarks to CRI about the “two sessions” (see beginning of this post) were duly posted under CRI’s “Our new Era – NPC and CPPCC’s 2018 All-China Two Sessions” category. China’s media habitually collect favorable foreign commentary on events in China, while suggesting that China doesn’t care when reactions abroad are less favorable.

On Wednesday, Xinhua newsagency also quoted extensively from foreign punditry (which can probably best be summed up as “strong China, sunny world”). The report quotes a Japanese professor, a Palestinian economist, an Indonesian think tank’s chairman, a global security expert from South Korea, an Argentine China researcher, another Japanese professor, a researcher at Russia’s “Valdai Club”, a publisher from the US, a Cuban international politics researcher, another researcher from Russia, and a French China expert.

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Note

RAE programs are broadcast on shortwave via WRMI (Florida, USA) and Kall-Krekel (Germany), and streamed on the internet. If sent by ordinary mail, reception reports on shortwave broadcasts are confirmed with a special QSL card in Argentina’s national colors.

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Related

Entrevista al embajador de Argentina, CRI, March 6, 2018

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Thursday, January 25, 2018

Shortwave Logs: Radio Romania International (RRI)

If you are looking for a European broadcaster on shortwave, the BBC World Service may come to your mind – or Radio Romania International (RRI). The latter’s range of program languages is quite diverse: English, Chinese, French, Romanian, Ukrainian, Russian, Arabic, Spanish, Italian, and German. One a week, on Sundays, there’s a broadcast in Hebrew, too, with a review of the week1).

— Some history

According to the station’s website, first experimental radio programmes for target areas beyond Romania’s borders were aired in 1927. Broadcasting became official on November 1, 1928, on 747 kHz (401.6 meters) – apparently targeted at a domestic audience, in Romanian only. French and English programs followed in 1932, “to inform the diplomatic corps in the Romanian capital city”, and weekly programs in French and German were targeted at central and western Europe. Before the second world war, all foreign broadcasts depended on medium wave transmitters. When the first shortwave transmissions began, the focus appears to have been on the Balkans, and the Middle East. According to RRI, [i] t seems that the first letter received from abroad came from Egypt.

It’s a detailed account of RRI’s history (and that of its preceding organizations, all headquartered in Bucharest’s General Berthelot Street), and will most likely contain some information that is new to the reader.

Olt County's coat of arms, 1985 and post-1989

Olt County’s coat of arms, as depicted on a QSL card of December 1985, and as of these days (click picture for Wiki entry)

— Languages, Programs, Contraditions

RRI provides news, background reports and some cultural coverage. Much of the content is the same in English, German, and Chinese, but focus may differ somewhat. While there is news, some background information and cultural programming in all these languages, listeners’ preferred topics seem to count, too. German listeners frequently enquire about European and social issues – something that appears to be of less interest to Chinese listeners. The scope of Chinese programs may also be somewhat limited by air time: thirty minutes per broadcast in Chinese, rather than sixty, as is the case with some of the broadcasts in English, French, and German.

When it comes to international exchange or openness, RRI certainly can’t be accused of discrimination. The Institut Francais is shown among their partners on the French service’s web pages, and a link to the “Confucius Institute” in Bucharest adorns the Chinese-language main page, side by side with one to the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (with no specified status).

According to RRI’s English service’s website, RRI’s Chinese service, which first went on air on October 1, 1999, benefited from […] Chinese language experts […] as well as our colleagues from Radio China International, the Romanian language department […].2)

Given the kind of “news” being broadcast by China Radio International (CRI), this kind of cooperation doesn’t look appropriate.

Some caveats: undue Beijing’s influence isn’t limited to RRI in particular, or to southeastern Europe in general3) (as suspected by some German quarters). A number of German universities have opted for cooperation with the agency from Beijing, for example, and areas of cooperation are hardly less sensitive.

Also, RRI’s news broadcasts in Chinese don’t appear to differ from those of the English or German departments. When Chinese listeners hear about Romanian citizens who take to the street, opposing changes to the country’s legal system, or Japan’s prime minister emphasizing liberty, democracy, human rights, and the rule of law as Japan’s and Romania’s shared values and principles, it may be met with more open minds, than if broadcast by a source that is deemed hostile by its audience.

All the same, turning October 1, 1949 into common ground between the audience and the station’s first broadcast in Chinese (October 1, 1994) spells a major contradiction, when suggesting at the same time, on a different history page, that RRI services turned towards the future, towards once again building a bridge between Romania and the democratic world and re-establishing the link between Romanians living abroad and those back home, a link that had been weakened on purpose by the totalitarian regime.

— Audience

RRI doesn’t offer detailed statistics – few international broadcasters do. It seems likely, however, that a presence on shortwave makes a difference for the better. I wouldn’t hear or read much about the country, if its signals didn’t come in handy. I’m suspecting that within Europe, the Middle East and North Africa, you can listen to RRI with a pressing iron (any appliance with spiral coils should do).

What has kept this blogger from giving feedback to the station is their online policy. It seems that everything that is mentioned in their listener’s-feedback programs goes right online, as a transcript. Facebookers probably won’t mind, but more traditional listeners may be a different story.

Either way, RRI certainly has its fans, and its multipliers.

— Shortwave

Shortwave plays an important role, at least when it comes to middle-aged and old listeners. For one, there’s the technical aspect. Nobody is encouraged to disassemble and reassemble his smartphone, or to boost its transmission power or its sensitivity. Use of shortwave, however, involves technical aspects, and people interested in some DIY. And while an app user may brush any source of information away after a few seconds, shortwave listeners’ attention span is likely to be sturdier.

It would seem to me that among a number of other aspects (sound not least – I find digital sound ugly), shortwave broadcasting signals respect for the listeners. It is more costly than web-based communication, it doesn’t provide broadcasters with as much information about how “efficient”, in terms of listener numbers, their productions actually are (which means that even the invisible listener matters), and it doesn’t ask if a listener lives under circumstances that allow for internet access – be it for economic or censorship reasons.

Shortwave is therefore a unique RRI feature. Bulgaria abandoned its shortwave transmissions years ago, so did Radio Poland, Radio Ukraine International, and Radio Prague (except for some airtime on German or American shortwave stations respectively). Radio Budapest, once one of the most popular Eastern European external broadcasters, is history.

— Recent RRI logs

Broadcasts in Chinese, German, and Hebrew
Time UTC Lang. Date Freq. S I N P O
07:00 German Jan21 7345 5 5 5 4 4
13:30 Chinese Jan21 9610 4 5 5 3 4
17:05 Hebrew Jan21 9790 4 5 5 3 4

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Footnotes

1) RRI’s website states 19:05 hours as the beginning of the transmission, which is standard time in Romania, and in Israel (17:05 GMT/UTC).
2) The Romanian department at CRI still exists, with an online presence, and medium/shortwave transmissions.
3) The “Spiegel” interview in German.

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Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Chinaplus

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