Paraguay plans to launch nation's first public TV in 2011

By Maira Magro

In an interview with Argentine daily Página 12, Paraguay's communications minister Augusto dos Santos says the country wants to launch its first state-run TV network in May of 2011.

According to dos Santos, the new network is part of a broader plan by President Fernando Lugo's government to strengthen public media, which will also include creating 10 new public radio stations and providing additional support and upgrades for existing public broadcasters. He adds that his ministry (officially titled the “Ministry of Information and Communication for Development”) is also working to create research chairs on development-oriented communication studies at seven public universities.

In terms of media regulation, the minister says it is premature to discuss news laws for the country’s communications sector.

The newspaper ABC Color criticized the plan to expand state media, saying that the public broadcasters would only be “instruments of [President Lugo’s] propaganda campaign.”

Note from the editor: This story was originally published by the Knight Center’s blog Journalism in the Americas, the predecessor of LatAm Journalism Review.