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Belarus to launch new news TV channel


According to BelTA a new news TV channel will be launched in Belarus, Information Minister Aleksandr Karlyukevich told the media after the meeting of the Belarusian head of state with the country's biggest state-run media outlets on 11 February.

“We discussed the development of a news TV channel as part of the National TV and Radio Company (Belarusteleradiocompany). The new channel will be developed this year. The channel will go on air in late 2020 or early 2021,” Aleksandr Karlyukevich said.

The issue regarding the development of a separate Euronews-like news channel in Belarus was discussed at the meeting of Aleksandr Lukashenko with the country's biggest state-run media outlets almost two years ago. Back then, the president gave instructions to look into the matter.

At the recent meeting the head of state touched upon the issue once again: “People are too busy to watch summarizing broadcasts like those BT or STV do in the evening… People want to see key information during the day.”

The president admitted he often gets distracted from long stories and reads the news ticker instead. “This is why we need in essence condensed, brief information accompanied by some footage,” he added.

The new TV channel will be based at the TV News Agency. The channel will broadcast from 7.00 to 24.00.

Chairman of the National State Television and Radio Company Ivan Eismont has revealed details of a new news channel that will be established in Belarus. This matter was discussed at the meeting of Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko with heads of the country's biggest mass media outlets on 11 February, BelTA has learned.

“I see it as a project of all state-run mass media outlets. It will be a traditional television channel specializing in news and analytics. We can compare it probably to Euronews, maybe, BBC, if such a comparison is appropriate, after all, we have not created this channel yet. This channel will be on air from 7.00 till 24.00. It will be based at the National State Television and Radio Company, the Television News Agency, but will be run separately. It will be in sync with the expanded internet unit of the National State Television and Radio Company that will undergo dramatic reforms soon. All our proposals were upheld. It is also absolutely possible that another online news portal will see the light of the day in Belarus. This will be a symbiosis of television and the internet,” Ivan Eismont said.

In his words, all television channels and other types of mass media, including printed press, are invited to get involved in the project. “This will be a big many-hour platform for all, including bloggers and analysts. Naturally, it will be meant for newscasts. We will be happy to see everyone there,” Ivan Eismont underlined.

The new channel is to be registered this year. “We will embark on this project today, so that the new channel will start broadcasting as soon as possible,” he said.

When asked by a BelTA reporter what role the Belarus 1 TV channel will have after the new channel comes on the air, Ivan Eismont noted that the channel needs to increase the share of high-quality entertainment content. The work on this front is already underway. “In the recent 1-1.5 years we have launched a series of landmark entertainment projects. More projects are hot on the heels, like a big national project X Factor to look for new talents. We have already got a huge feedback from the young generation,” Ivan Eismont said.

Summing it up, the Belarus 1 TV channel will have a lot of entertainment programs, landmark social and political projects. The bulk of content related to politics, economy and news will be relocated to the new channel

The new news channel might be launched in Belarus in 2021, Chairman of the National State Television and Radio Company Ivan Eismont told the First National Channel of the Belarusian Radio on 13 February, BelTA has learned.

“Journalists asked me what kind of channel this will be. I said that this channel could be compared to Euronews or BBC. Everyone wrote afterwards that we are going to establish a BBC in Belarus. In reality, we are going to create a Belarusian information channel based on our needs and capacities. A concept has already been developed. This matter is in the works right now. I think we will be able to enjoy this channel next year,” Ivan Eismont said.

According to him, this will be a traditional television channel specializing in news and analytics. “In line with our plans, this channel will be on air from early morning till late at night. It is highly likely that each news item will be repeated for several one-hour cycles until it is changed to accommodate new information or displaced by fresh stories. It will also accommodate interviews, video blogs, staple programs and sections. It is obvious that there is a deficit of information for debate, diversity of opinions, and simply television slots. The Belarus 1 channel broadcasts about a dozen news programs a day. This is obviously not enough. We have much more information around us, both in Belarus and worldwide. We want to deliver this information to the audience,” Ivan Eismont said.

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