BBC to bow TV channels in Myanmar

BBC World News, BBC Entertainment, CBeebies to launch Jan. 1

LONDON — BBC Worldwide has agreed a deal to bow three of its pay channels in Myanmar, until recently off limits to Western media outfits because of its former military dictatorship.

BBC World News, BBC Entertainment and CBeebies will launch on the Forever Group’s pay TV platform Jan. 1.

Additionally BBC World Service global English radio is to bow on the platform, which potentially reaches around 250,000 homes in Myanmar.

Peter Horrocks, director, BBC global news: “For many years, the BBC has delivered accurate, impartial international radio services to (the people of Myanmar), serving as a vital lifeline service to Aung San Suu Kyi (the pro-democracy leader) and those across the country…

“It is a great sign of progress for (Myanmar) and I’m honored for the BBC to play a role in opening the country up to the world.”

During a visit to London earlier this year San Suu Kyi praised the BBC World Service for how its broadcasts had served as a lifeline during her long hours of detention by the military junta, whose rule ended last year.

Last month President Obama visited Myanmar, another sign of the former pariah state’s return to the world stage.