Monday, June 29, 2015

Waving goodbye

At at time when we're all a little concerned about Britons abroad, and reliable information is at a premium, it's unfortunate that tomorrow the BBC World Service is ending its FM transmissions in Abu Dhabi, which have been on-air since 2003.  English programming runs 9am to 6pm, with transmissions in Arabic before and after.

It's probably little consolation for the ex-pats that BBC World Service is still available on Medium Wave between 6am and 7am, and 10pm to 12am on 1413 kHz in English. The BBC says FM delivery is not cost-effective, and expects listeners to move to listening online, via apps or through satellite services.

Ex-pats from countries around the world make up 80% of the Emirates 2.3m population. In 2012 it was estimated that there were over 250,000 Brits in Abu Dhabi. Most signs are in English and Arabic, and English is the language of business.

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