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Posts by Martyn Williams
The BBC World Service plans to launch a radio service for listeners in North Korea thanks to extra funding received from the British government.
The money, some £85 million (US$128 million) per year, represents the single biggest increase in the World Service budget ever committed by any government and is being given as part of Britain’s national security strategy.
Voice of Korea, North Korea’s international shortwave broadcasting station, adjusted its transmission schedule on October 25 for the winter 2015 and spring 2016 seasons.
The broadcasts follow the same basic line-up each day.
:00 Opening signal, station identification: “This is Voice of Korea”
:01 National Anthem
:03 Song of General Kim Il Sung
:06 Song of General Kim Jong Il
:09 News, editorials (approx 15 minutes, but can be extended to full broadcast), followed by music
:30 Reminiscences of Great Leader President Kim Il Sung of the century
:40 Music and features
:50 Editorial, special message (occasional)
:55 Frequency information
French news agency Agence France Presse plans to open a bureau in Pyongyang, the company’s chairman said this week in Seoul.
“We expect to be able to do so in the next few months. It’s something that is on the good tracks,” Emmanuel Hoog told the CEO of South Korean news agency Yonhap during a meeting, according to a Yonhap report.
The BBC has proposed launching a daily news service for North Korea, but the broadcast could be years from starting, if it starts at all.
Plans for the service were included in a report published on Monday by the BBC that outline its proposals for the next decade. Among the, additional efforts by the BBC World Service to focus on “parts of the world where there is a democratic deficit in impartial news.”
As part of that effort, the BBC said it wants to begin “A daily news programme, seven days a week, for North Korea, initially delivered through shortwave.”
North Korea’s new time zone, Pyongyang Time, went into effect early Friday and changes are already being seen.
The new time zone shifts time in North Korea so it’s half an hour later than the time in Seoul and Tokyo and half an hour close to Beijing. It was announced last week and was introduced on August 15 to coincide with the 70th anniversary of Korea’s liberation from Japan.