Bahrain to boost media standards through international accords
December 26th, 2011 - 15:18 UTC
by Andy Sennitt.

Bahrain has agreed on deals with international audio-visual companies to boost local skills and enhance the media landscape. Shaikh Fawaz Bin Mohammad Al Khalifa, the president of the Information Affairs Authority (IAA), on today said that the contracts with major international media organizations have been completed and that they would “contribute to training and providing programming in an effort to improve the services provided through the Bahrain Radio and Television Corporation (BRTC).”

The accords were with the Institut National de l’Audiovisuel (INA), Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) and the (BBC), said Shaikh Fawaz, who was given the information portfolio in July 2010.

The French INA has been providing training in the field of audiovisual and digital technology and its uses. The contract covers training that is linked with the technical upgrade to digital television, including sound technicians, graphic editors, graphic designers and documentary editors.

The BBG has agreed to provide the IAA with programming through the Voice of America (VOA) in both English and Arabic that will be broadcast on FM radio. The contract stipulates that content will be consistent with both the BBG standards and practices, and the national, cultural, religious and social sensitivities of Bahrain. BBG will also provide an annual training seminar to participants selected by the IAA.

The contract with the BBG is, in addition to the one with the BBC, to supply radio programming that includes concerts, pop documentaries, features, dramas, readings and comedies. The IAA said that it also renewed its contract with SOMERA, a Parisian broadcasting corporation for radio programming in French and Arabic, through 2016.