China state broadcaster CCTV launches global media network to help rebrand China overseas

The government has spent vast sums to enhance its own influence and shape global opinion

Samuel Osborne
Saturday 31 December 2016 11:47
Comments
President Xi Jinping urged the newly launched network to 'tell China's story well'
President Xi Jinping urged the newly launched network to 'tell China's story well'

China Central Television (CCTV), the country’s largest and most important TV network, said it will launch a new global platform on New Year's Day to help rebrand China overseas.

The state broadcaster published a congratulatory letter from President Xi Jinping, urging the newly launched China Global Television Network to “tell China's story well, spread China's voice well, let the world know a three-dimensional, colourful China, and showcase China's role as a builder of world peace”.

The government has long complained about the Western news media’s hold on international discourse and in recent years has spent vast sums to enhance its own influence and shape global opinion, with CCTV as one of its spearheads.

China wants to rate its citizens

The broadcaster has channels in English, Arabic, French, Spanish and Russian and production centres in Washington and Nairobi.

The new multilingual media cluster will have six TV channels, a video newsletter agency and a new media agency.

China has been extending its global influence with “soft power” tactics, such as launching new English language media and auditioning international public relations firms to tailor its branding strategy.

In the past year, Mr Xi has tightened the ruling Communist Party's control over state media outlets, while rearticulating their core mission to serve as the government’s mouthpiece.

CCTV and the official Xinhua News Agency have expanded aggressively in recent years, with dual missions to become globally credible media heavyweights while sustaining their roles as vital propaganda organs of the Communist Party.

China announced a plan in 2009 to spend 45 billion yuan (£5.2bn) to help spread its message abroad.

In the years since, CCTV and Xinhua have leased a giant display in New York's Times Square that has, among other things, broadcast videos arguing China's position on the South China Sea territorial dispute.

They have also deployed vast numbers of journalists to produce extensive daily reports from around the world, including from countries in the Middle East, Latin America and Africa, where Western media presences are shrinking amid vanishing budgets.

Additional reporting by agencies

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in