StarTimes, a Chinese media company, is contributing immensely to Tanzania’s digital migration by enabling households in the east African country to afford digital television, an executive officer from the company has said recently.
Guo Ziqi, Vice-Chairman of StarTimes Group, said: “Our aim is to enable every African household to afford the digital TV, watch good digital TV and enjoy the digital life.”
Currently, she said, StarTimes has more than 9 million customers across Africa and it is becoming the leading digital TV operator with big influence and fast development.
Guo made the remarks earlier this week to a delegation of Chinese and Tanzanian journalists who were on a tour of Chinese enterprises in Tanzania with a view to shedding light on the fruitful achievements made under China-Africa cooperation.
Organized by China’s State Council Information Office, about 20 journalists from both countries visited Chinese enterprises that were involved in Africa’s development that benefited people’s well-being and promoted friendship between China and Tanzania.
Guo said digitalization in Africa is currently at an impressive stage and StarTimes is sticking to its principle of serving the common, completing the network and cooperating with different countries.
Digitization is the current trend in broadcasting, which means digitalization of signal source, broadcasting system, transmission and terminal products.
It brings to bear many benefits including promoting social development, freeing up more frequencies for other communication services, providing increased opportunities for innovation and creativity aside from quality image, sound clarity and interactive communication.
There are challenges around digitalization which includes but not limited to capital-intensity and technology-intensity.
Although digital migration has become one of the biggest challenges in African television, Tanzania is among the African countries that have completed the transition and helped its citizen enjoy the digital world. Tanzania is among first group of countries in mainland Sub-Saharan Africa which switch off its analogue television signal.
Tanzania started the analogue switch-over on 31st December 2012 and completed 30th April, 2015 when all analogue television transmitters were switched off.
Guo said at the end of last year, China announced that it would help implement Satellite TV projects in 10,000 villages in Africa in coming years.
“This project is aimed at sending the welfare to people living in the villages and to enhance the understanding and friendship between China and Africa,” said Guo, adding that StarTimes was participating in this project positively and continues making contribution to Africa and Sino-Africa friendship.
Nape Nnauye, Tanzania’s Minister for Information, Culture, Arts and Sports, said the media is playing an important role in bridging the gaps between the people of Africa and China in a speech last week.
He added that the media has an important role to play in publicizing and promoting the investment opportunities in both China and Africa.
Liao Lanfang, Chief Executive Officer of Star Media (Tanzania) Limited, a joint venture established by StarTimes and Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation (TBC), said the company operates Pay TV services by providing a variety of premium digital television programs, and a series of high quality digital TV terminal equipment.
StarTimes has invested about 150 million U.S. dollars and created over 1,500 jobs in Tanzania, east Africa’s second largest economy.
Source: Xinhua December 3