Saudi Arabia launches new channel

Upgraded Al-Ikhbariya satellite TV channel will be turned into an LLC with an English-language service.
Dawud Al-Shirayian
Dawud Al-Shirayian

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Saudi satellite TV channel Al-Ikhbariya will be converted into a limited liability company (LLC) under the name “Ikhbariya Network Company, Saudi Minister of Culture and Information Dr. Auwad bin Saleh Al-Auwad said on Wednesday.

The company will be jointly owned by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) and Radio and Television Corporation on a 50-50 basis, according to the SPA.

According to Dr. Al-Auwad, the decision to upgrade the Arabic-language news channel and launch an English-language new channel within the company will allow for improved event and news coverage to help Saudis keep abreast of local and international news.

Al-Awwad said in a statement: “Such a change comes within the context of the ministry’s initiatives to achieve Vision 2030, and enable its various institutions to keep abreast of developments in the media arena at the level of the region and the world. We have established media institutions in Saudi Arabia and we are working with them to provide all the support they need to professionally convey the Kingdom’s message to the world.”

Ikhbariya, the company in the pipeline, is set to be run by a seven-member board with an executive bureau, three of them representing the Ministry of Culture and Information, two independent members representing the private sector, and two members each from the Radio and Television Corporation and the SPA.

Executive President of the Radio and Television Authority Dawud Al-Shirayian is appointed as the Chairman of the Board of Directors. Also appointed to the board were Abdul Aziz Al-Fahd, Khalid Madkhali, Muhammad Al-Qahtani, Obaid Al-Rasheed, Jasser Al-Jasser and Saad Al-Jirais as directors of the company, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

The nascent company is expected to function shortly as soon as required administrative procedures are completed.

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