Top BBC factual shows may close

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The Independent Online

A major shake-up of BBC current affairs programmes will produce a £1m cash injection for investigative shows including Panorama, a corporation spokesperson said yesterday.

The new director-general, Greg Dyke, has also demanded a review of the BBC's business programming, which will result in the scrapping or transformation of The Money Programme. A current affairs insider said: "When Greg visited the programme's offices a few months ago, he made no secret of the fact that he thought it looks old-fashioned and tired."

His opinion is shared by the controller of BBC2, Jane Root.

The building of a dynamic, modern business and economics department is to be adopted as a new priority for current affairs, the BBC confirmed yesterday. The extra money for Panorama will be accompanied by some extra money to be put into investigations by the business journalism team.

A further £1m is to be invested in expanding BBC news's 24-hour operations. Sixteen new reporters and specialist correspondents will be hired. A fifth of the £1m is to be spent on international reporting.

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