TeleSUR Forg­ing Caribbean Part­ner­ships

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL -

Multi­na­tional broad­caster TeleSUR fea­tures a news­cast that's on air 24/7 with a view­ing au­di­ence of over 500 mil­lion. The multi-plat­form net­work fea­tures pro­gram­ming in Span­ish and English, and boasts cor­re­spon­dents across the world in­clud­ing the United States, China, and all of Latin Amer­ica.

This week rep­re­sen­ta­tives of TeleSUR, hosted by the Venezue­lan Em­bassy, met with lo­cal me­dia to an­nounce the com­mence­ment of a new project en­ti­tled ‘Caribbean takes over TeleSUR'. On the oc­ca­sion it was an­nounced that the net­work was on a mis­sion to de­velop part­ner­ships in the re­gion to help share the Caribbean with the rest of the world.

“We have a debt to the Caribbean and want to start pay­ing that debt,” Helga Malavoi, Di­rec­tor of In­ter­na­tional Af­fairs and Dis­tri­bu­tion for TeleSUR said at the meet­ing held in the con­fer­ence room of Au­berge Seraphine on Tues­day evening. “We want the Caribbean and Latin Amer­ica to go hand in hand; not only in Latin Amer­ica, with our spe­cialty we also broad­cast sto­ries in the Mid­dle East.”

With as­sis­tance from a trans­la­tor, Malavoi spoke in depth about the pro­gram­ming fea­tured on the net­work that in­cludes 19 live broad­casts, sport­ing pro­grammes, three news­casts daily, with spe­cial pro­gram­ming on week­ends. Science, cul­ture, ecol­ogy, sex­ual di­ver­sity, health, tech­nol­ogy, pol­i­tics, and other news and com­men­taries are also in­cluded.

“What makes TeleSUR dif­fer­ent is where they point their cam­eras,” she said, draw­ing ref­er­ence to a re­cent news story fea­tured on the net­work con­cern­ing the dis­ap­pear­ance of 43 stu­dents in Mex­ico.

“The peo­ple we in­ter­viewed were par­ents and peo­ple who live in the area. We look for a story first-hand; peo­ple who are ac­tu­ally liv­ing what is hap­pen­ing. We want not only for view­ers to see head­lines, but to know what hap­pened, to know the news in depth. We don't only want to broad­cast the fact that it hap­pened, but to show what was hap­pen­ing in that par­tic­u­lar place, what was hap­pen­ing be­fore, and whether sim­i­lar in­ci­dents had been hap­pen­ing be­fore the ac­tual event.”

Rep­re­sen­ta­tives an­nounced at Tues­day's meet­ing a pro­posal for print, ra­dio, tele­vi­sion, and web me­dia to be part­ners of TeleSUR. As part of the agree­ment, part­ners would have ac­cess to TeleSUR's ex­ten­sive me­dia, and to their cor­re­spon­dents. A large part of the col­lab­o­ra­tion would en­tail the shar­ing of news sto­ries and re­sources, with the pos­si­bil­ity of train­ing and ca­pac­ity build­ing.

The pro­posal has also been ex­tended to other is­lands across the Caribbean, and rep­re­sen­ta­tives shared that af­ter their meet­ing in Saint Lu­cia, they would be off to Gre­nada.

“We're al­ready ex­chang­ing in­for­ma­tion with jour­nal­ists around the Caribbean,” Malavoi said. “In­for­ma­tion is a right and not a busi­ness. We are do­ing ex­changes at no cost.”

As part of the drive to in­cor­po­rate more news from the Caribbean in its pro­gram­ming, the net­work has al­ready com­piled in­tro­duc­tory pre­sen­ta­tions of each coun­try, some of which were shown at this week's me­dia en­gage­ment. “We think it's a dif­fer­ent way to show the Caribbean to the rest of the world,” Malavoi said. “Do­minica, An­tigua and Bar­buda . . . ev­ery Tues­day is a dif­fer­ent coun­try.”

She added that they had al­ready spo­ken to var­i­ous prime min­is­ters of the re­gion, as well as or­di­nary peo­ple, in an ef­fort to get more in­for­ma­tion, and see what the is­lands are all about.

“For Saint Lu­cia we will be fea­tur­ing the Mayor of Cas­tries,” she an­nounced. “The prime min­is­ter has re­quested an in­ter­view in June.”

TeleSUR is spon­sored by the gov­ern­ments of Venezuela, Cuba, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Uruguay, and Bo­livia and is head­quar­tered in Cara­cas, Venezuela. In­ter­ested me­dia were asked to con­tact the com­pany for more in­for­ma­tion, ahead of de­vel­op­ing the in­for­ma­tion-friendly “love re­la­tion­ship” be­tween Latin Amer­ica and the Caribbean.

Left to right: Venezue­lan Am­bas­sador Leiff Escalona, TeleSUR Vice Pres­i­dent of Op­er­a­tions and Tech­nol­ogy Paulo Romero, TeleSUR Di­rec­tor of In­ter­na­tional Af­fairs and Dis­tri­bu­tion Helga Malavoi and Martha Ortega, Man­ager of For­eign Af­fairs and Pub­lic Re­la­tions of PDV Caribbean.

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