Daily Management Review

BBC World News Banned From Broadcasting In China


BBC World News Banned From Broadcasting In China
The television and radio regulator of China has banned the broadcasting of the British television news network BBC World News in the country this week. The television channel has been barred from telecasting any reports on coronavirus pandemic and the persecution of ethnic minority Uighurs in China.
The decision has “disappointed” it, the BBC said.
This move was taken by China after the British media regulator Ofcom revoked the licence to broadcast in the United Kingdom of the Chinese state broadcaster China Global Television Network's (CGTN). That decision by Ofcom was taken earlier this month based on the finding that the license of CGTN was held wrongfully by Star China Media Ltd.
Ofcom had also found that CGTN had last year breached British broadcasting regulations by airing an alleged forced confession of the UK citizen Peter Humphrey in Chinese custody.
The reports by BBC World News reports about China were considered to "seriously violate" broadcast guidelines of the country which included "the requirement that news should be truthful and fair" and not "harm China's national interests", said China's State Film, TV and Radio Administration while announcing the decision of the ban.
The authorities would not accept BBC's application to air for another year, it said.
'We are disappointed that the Chinese authorities have decided to take this course of action. The BBC is the world's most trusted international news broadcaster and reports on stories from around the world fairly, impartially and without fear or favour," the BBC said in a statement.
The global broadcasting of BBC World News TV channel is done in English and the channel is funded commercially. Even before the ban was applied, the operations of the channel was largely restricted in China and was broadcast only in international hotels and some diplomatic compounds which meant that most of the Chinese population did not see the channel in any case.
The move was described as an "unacceptable curtailing of media freedom" by the British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.
The Chinese decision was condemned by the United States State Department and described the action as a part of a wider strategy of the Chinese government to supress free press in China.
Issues such as the introduction of the controversial new security law in Hong Kong after a large pro-democracy movement swept the ex-British colony have resulted in serious deterioration in recent months in the relations between the United Kingdom and China.
The right to about 5.4 million Hong Kong residents to live in the UK and eventually become citizens was granted by the UK through a new visa system in January this year. This move was taken because the UK believes that rights and freedoms in Hong Kong are being undermined by the Chinese authorities.
And foreign media has been systematically blocked or banned in China over the past two years. In 2020 the Chinese authorities also effectively expelled journalists from three US newspapers. Chinese authorities had already banned the BBC website and its app in the country.