Australian senate rejects bill to restore ABC shortwave

The bill would have required the ABC to restore its shortwave transmission services which the broadcaster ended in January this year.

This move was described in the bill as having deprived communities in Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and other parts of the Pacific of access to reliable emergency broadcasting.

Submitters of the bill questioned the ABC’s assertions that very few listeners accessed Radio Australia’s shortwave service.

Concerns of the submitters included perceived neglect of remote communities in the Pacific, and the loss of capacity for emergency warning broadcasts.

They also appealed to Australia’s own regional interests, warning of the potential loss of an avenue for diplomacy and “soft power” in the Pacific.

 

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