Tibet to launch more bilingual TV, radio programs

Updated: 2012-01-13 18:50


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LHASA - Tenzin's favorite TV program is "Tom and Jerry," and the six-year-old believes the American-born cat and mouse can  speak Tibetan.

"It makes me laugh to see the cat make a fool of itself every time," said Tenzin, a first-grader in Lhasa, capital of Southwest China's Tibet autonomous region.

The American cartoon series on show daily at a local cable TV is among 1,500 hours of TV programs translated into the Tibetan language every year, said Zhang Chongyin, chief of Tibet's regional bureau of radio, film and television.

"Many Chinese classics have also been translated into the Tibetan language, such as the Monkey King and the Legend of the Condor Heroes," Zhang said at the regional political advisory session on Friday.

Zhang is a member of Tibet's regional committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).

Tibet's radio and TV services cover 91.67 percent and 92.8 percent respectively of the region's 3 million population, said Zhang.

All urban residents living in Tibet's cities and counties have access to at least three wireless TV channels and 30 cable TV channels, while about 70 percent of the rural and herding population can receive satellite TV and radio signals, he said.

A 24-hour Tibetan-language TV channel that offers news programs and TV drama series is favored by most Tibetans as their first-choice TV channel.

Besides TV, Tibet translates more than 10,000 hours of radio programs and 60 films every year, said Zhang.

"We're working to enrich the Tibetan people's cultural life by providing quality TV programs and films," he said. "But there's still a huge gap between what people demand and what we can offer at this stage."  

About 30 percent of Tibet's farmers and herdsmen - living in remote areas - still have no access to power supplies and can not receive TV or radio, he said.

This year, Zhang said his bureau will improve radio and TV coverage in remote areas and at monasteries, launch more bilingual TV and radio programs and translate more Chinese and foreign films for the Tibetan people.

"We'll encourage producers to shoot more original Tibetan films and TV programs to cater to the locals' demand, and help preserve the unique language and culture."