FCO Performance and Finances

Written evidence from BBC World Service

Part 1: The Year in Review – 2009/10

Summary of key events and developments

BBC World Service continued to implement changes necessary to retain its reputation for the

future in the face of profound economic, social and technological change.

2010 saw a dramatic drop in global short wave listening trends - BBC World Service lost 20 million short wave listeners, but this was counteracted by the addition of 9 million new viewers to its television, online and mobile services, in addition to new listeners to BBC radio programmes through local FM and medium wave radio partner stations in a number of countries. The overall weekly multimedia audience is 180 million across television, radio, online and mobiles.

The estimated BBC Arabic television audience was up 3.5 million to 12 million, making it the BBC’s largest language service with an audience of 22 million across all platforms. BBC Persian has an estimated 3.1 million viewers in Iran.

The figures show the success of our multimedia strategy and investments for global audiences. But the continued dramatic decline in short wave listening shows that those audiences are rapidly changing the way they access international news. Unless BBC World Service can accelerate its response to those changes, it will face a rapid deterioration of its impact as other technologies become more prominent in international media markets.

It was a year of major news events such as the earthquake in Haiti, the floods in Pakistan, the Moscow Metro attacks, and more recently, the ordeal of the Chilean miners. BBC World Service delivered outstanding journalism, bringing a wider perspective to audiences in closer collaboration with other parts of BBC Global News.

BBC World Service also played a role in raising editorial standards - we are only beginning to appreciate the full impact of our journalism on local media and even on the course of events. Examples of this include Kenya, where newspapers trusted BBC Swahili to verify reports of witness intimidation, and Nigeria, where President Umaru Yar’Adua’s gave an exclusive interview to BBC Hausa shortly before his death, because it symbolised credibility - the interview played a central role in the country’s constitutional debate. BBC World Service aims to be a standard-setter in the new platforms and the new spaces, just as it has been over the years in radio.

Independent research continues to indicate that BBC World Service’s reputation for providing unbiased and objective news and information is stronger than that of any other international radio competitor in most markets surveyed.

BBC World Service launched 18 new mobile sites in 2009/10, attracting 4 million monthly page impressions by February 2010. This figure has increased by 150% in just seven months, to 10 million as of September 2010.

Online performance was up 39%, to 7.3 million weekly unique users.

BBC Global News - which includes BBC World Service, BBC World News television and the BBC’s international news online services - had a record global weekly audience of more than 241 million during 2009/10.

BBC World Service faced distribution problems in a number of countries including Pakistan, India, Azerbaijan, Somalia and Sudan, as well as continuing problems in China and Russia.

BBC World Service programming excellence was recognised at the annual Sony Awards in 2010 where it secured six awards, two of them Golds - Lyse Doucet for News Journalist of the Year, and Newshour for Best Current Affairs Programme. Other awards received throughout the year included Hotbird TV News Channel of the Year Award for BBC Persian, two Peabody Awards, a CBA Award for Best Human Rights Programme for Assignment: Africa’s Guantanamo and the Speaker Abbot Award for Bravery which went to Mohammed Olad Hassan, a reporter based in Mogadishu.

In polling commissioned by Chatham House (British Attitudes towards the UK’s International Priorities, Chatham House/YouGov, July 2010), when asked "which of these do you think do most to serve Britain's interests around the world?" ‘BBC radio and TV world services’ came out on top with both the general public (jointly with the armed forces) and UK opinion formers when compared to the FCO, DFID, armed forces, culture, and the intelligence services.

And from a detailed study by BBC World Service into its international audiences’ perceptions, (Human Capital, research in Egypt, Pakistan, Turkey and Kenya, commissioned by the BBC in 2009) 80% of audience members in four key countries said it makes them think more positively of the UK - more than say the same of Premier League football, UK aid, the UK Government, popular British culture and the armed forces. 71% believed that it enhances the UK’s reputation for democracy and fairness.

Meanwhile a Globescan poll commissioned by the BBC (based on 265 interviews with international business influencers in the US, India, Turkey, Nigeria and UAE in 2010) found that 89% of those who consume BBC News would speak positively about Britain as a place to do business. It revealed that business leaders who use the BBC are more positive about Britain as a place to do business, when compared to those who do not use the BBC.


BBC World Service’s Global Audience Estimate reported in March 2010 an overall weekly multimedia audience of 180 million across television, radio, online and mobiles. Whilst the World Service’s position as the leading international broadcaster with the highest audience has been maintained, this is eight million down on last year’s record.

Audience figures reflect global shifts in media consumption as short wave declines and new media platforms continue to expand rapidly. The internet is now used by 1.5bn, set to rise by 50% in the next five years and with over 4.5bn mobile phone users worldwide; mobile services are becoming the primary means of access to online news and information for many. TV has established itself over 20 years as the main platform for news consumption in many parts of the world.

In lifeline markets, BBC World Service continues to perform well on short wave (in Burma, the BBC now reaches 8.5 million listeners weekly, up 1.4 million on the last survey). However, BBC World Service lost 20 million short wave radio listeners during the year, as part of the increasing global decline in short wave listening. Losses were particularly significant in Bangladesh (-7.0m), India (-8.2m), and Nigeria (-2.9m).

There were radio audience gains in Tanzania (+1.4m), and the US (+0.6m), mainly through BBC programmes being used on local FM and medium wave radio partner stations. And there were nine million new viewers to BBC World Service’s television, online and mobile services. Visitors to BBC World Service online increased by 39%, and there was a 72% increase in the estimated audience of non-English television. BBC Arabic now reaches 22m people a week across all platforms, including 12 million on television.

Those figures demonstrate the need for BBC World Service to be able to accelerate its response to global trends, as audiences rapidly change the way they access international news. In Turkey for example, a strategically important market to the BBC and to the UK, digital partnerships established in 2009/2010 increased weekly unique users from 37,000 in October 2009 to a young, vibrant Turkish audience of over 260,000 in October 2010. On TV, daily news and current affairs programme World Agenda broadcast on partner channel, NTV, targets an influential audience and reaches 1.7 million weekly viewers.

The BBC has continued to develop its mobile presence in important markets. For example in Pakistan, where mobile users have increased from 1 million to 100 million in a decade, BBC World Service will shortly be launching dial-up, on-demand audio news and sports bulletins available to subscribers who will be able to dial a short code for the latest BBC news in Urdu. This will also be launching very shortly in Bangladesh and India. The BBC now has mobile sites in 18 languages, notably in African languages where mobile is also growing rapidly as a source of news and information.

Performance against targets: The overall reach of radio, television and online was below the target of 192 million at 180 million. This was mainly due to the larger than anticipated decline in short wave and medium wave audiences. The figure does not include all areas - it was not possible to survey Pakistan because of the political situation, data from Iraq was delayed due to problems with fieldwork and the results from a survey in Sudan could not be used because the sample did not adequately represent the population.

The agreed targets for impact of the BBC’s online offer were once again exceeded in all areas: the number of weekly users rose to 7.3 million (target was 6m), the number of monthly video views rose to 27 million (target was 20 million) and the number of BBC WAP site page impressions rose to 4 million (target was 2 million).

BBC World Service’s reputation as the best known and most respected international broadcaster remains strong - in surveys it scores higher than its nearest competitor in the majority of indicators, so the multimedia strategy of transition to FM, television, online and mobile continues to be successful.

Distribution challenges


The Azeri authorities have maintained the ban from January 2009 on all international radio broadcasters from transmitting on FM. The BBC continues to work with the FCO to secure a resolution.


BBCChinese.com (the news content site) and Chinese broadcasts on short wave continue to be jammed effectively by the Chinese authorities. It has been virtually impossible for the BBC to provide news to a Chinese audience on these platforms for some time. However, new technologies have enabled the BBC to reach Chinese audiences via other means. The BBC news app launched in April 2010 by the BBC and Apple now has 20,000 iPhone and iPad subscribers within China who can access news stories from BBCChinese.com. And in response to requests from BBC Chinese users, a simple to use circumvention service was launched in September 2010 in order to get around the blocking of the website. This is still very much at an experimental stage, but uptake has been very active so far and users have been sending appreciative feedback.

BBCUKChina.com (the non-news site) continues to be successful with more than twenty partners taking up our content in English learning, studying in the UK, British life and culture and the Premier League. In September 2010, BBC Chinese launched a partnership with China’s third biggest portal site, sohu.com, with content and information on English Learning and studying in the UK, plus a joint project with provincial radio stations promoting UK culture, particularly lifestyle and music.


The BBC has faced difficulties with regulatory authorities for its mobile news provision in India. Regulators have directed that all foreign broadcasters should stop news bulletins that are available upon dialling a local number across all mobile operators in the country. This has obstructed the launch of new mobile services in India by the BBC.


Following the election, BBC Persian TV’s satellite signal was subjected to deliberate and illegal interference from within Iran. The BBC is pleased to report that jamming ceased in May 2010. Since the aftermath of the 2009 election, the channel has continued to have a powerful role and impact for Iranian society. This was ably demonstrated when it emerged that BBC Persian TV is watched at cabinet meetings. Speaking in an interview in May 2010 after denying having watched any Persian language satellite channels, Iran's Vice-President then nuanced his response with "I have watched BBC Persian's programmes once or twice at cabinet meetings, but I do not have time for that…'

A recent highlight was an interview with Barack Obama responding to Ahmadinejad's UN General Assembly speech. A White House spokesman cited BBC Persian's 'substantial viewership … radio reach … and a website that is one of the most trafficked websites in the region' making it 'an effective platform to reach the Iranian audience'. The interview had a massive impact on public discourse with over 1 million Google mentions in Persian and 54,000 Persian blog mentions, with editorial leadership shown as CNN, Sky News and CBS led with the interview.


The BBC has faced difficulties in recent years with the local regulator, PEMRA, in maintaining FM news broadcasts in Pakistan. A service broadcast on two networks, launched in June 2007, was disrupted and the BBC was taken off air by the regulatory authorities; the BBC subsequently challenged this in the Pakistani courts, and the situation was further complicated when the state of emergency was declared. FM news broadcasts were back on air in May 2009 with 34 stations delivering BBC Urdu bulletins. However, March 2010 saw more difficulties with PEMRA which resulted in stations being allowed to carry a maximum of three ten minute bulletins daily, now provided by the BBC to 37 stations.


BBC World Service has continued to face a number of challenges around its availability as a radio service. BBC Russian is available online, on short wave and on medium wave frequencies in Moscow, St Petersburg and Ekaterinburg but audiences are falling (we estimate that only around 0.5% of the Russian population listens to these services). Despite extensive efforts, BBC Russian continues not to be available on FM.

In response, BBC World Service has continued successfully to increase its audience via online platforms. Digital partnerships established with MSN Russian, GZT and Newstube in 2009/2010 have driven traffic to the BBC Russian website and contributed to a substantial increase in weekly unique users online from circa 337,000 in October 2009 to approximately 540,000 in September 2010.


BBC World Service has faced considerable difficulties from al-Shabaab’s activities. In April 2010, al-Shabaab confiscated BBC transmission equipment at all relay sites in southern Somalia and ordered all local FM stations to stop broadcasting BBC programmes, leading to a reliance on short wave. Al-Shabaab said it was taking this decision after observing "the impact of the BBC news which is far from reality and it exaggerates the views of the West which is geared to confuse the Muslims".

The BBC has been able to re-establish its FM presence through launching a new FM relay in Galkaacyo and though our Somali partner in Kenya, Star FM, having launched a repeater station in Mogadishu at the beginning of August 2010. In addition BBC World Service has signed a deal with Radio Shabelle, the most listened-to radio station in Mogadishu which now broadcasts all BBC Somali programmes.


The BBC has faced difficulties in the North following the successful establishment of an FM relay in Southern Sudan with a mixed schedule of BBC Arabic and World Service English in July 2010. In August, the authorities in Northern Sudan shut down four relays - terminating the BBC’s presence in the North on FM. The BBC is working with the FCO on this, and hopes for a resolution soon.


FM broadcasts in Dubai have ended this year due to unacceptably higher license costs relative to priorities. BBC World Service continues to broadcast in Abu Dhabi.

Editorial Highlights

Haiti’s Earthquake – January 2010

BBC World Service launched a lifeline service within four days of the earthquake, initially in French, Spanish and English, then in Creole, to provide information about the rescue and reconstruction efforts as a key source of information to Haitians, including rescue and aid teams on the ground. It relayed updates, such as the location of a temporary hospital, water supplies and food drops. It also relied on interaction with the audience on a daily basis via emails and text messages.

Koneksyon Ayiti (Connexion Haiti) was available on satellite, online and via social media, as well as being transmitted on FM through Radio France. The earthquake had a major impact on traditional forms of communication, meaning that new and emerging media filled a crucial gap, breaking news direct from devastated areas. Much information available came via Skype and Twitter, and BBC World Service used the same tools to inform people about its lifeline programming.

Superpower - March 2010

The Superpower season focused on the power of the web to change the world and pushed the boundaries of experimental content with a range of collaborative content and programmes. SuperPower Nation Day was a remarkable multilingual, multi-platform experiment using Google translate technology. Arabic, Chinese, English, Indonesian, Persian, Portuguese and Spanish audiences communicated directly through a unique website that converted messages instantaneously into the other languages. With over twelve thousand messages in six hours, people from all over the world were brought together in a global conversation.

Metro attacks in Moscow – March 2010

When the attacks on the Moscow Metro happened in March 2010, killing at least 40 people, a coordinated response by all parts of BBC Global News gave an edge to the coverage. The BBC Russian service reacted rapidly and provided comprehensive coverage of the incident and its aftermath with the latest news, analysis and context by its journalists on location, as well as tightly integrating UGC and social media into the output. Online traffic to BBCRussian.com surged five-fold on the day of the attacks, with 393,000 unique users accessing the site and content on partner websites for its analysis and insight.

The UK’s General Election - April/May 2010

The challenge for BBC Global News was presenting that election in a way that encouraged dialogue and engaged with our audiences, explaining the processes and events taking place in the UK. The language services met this challenge with a creativity and dynamism. This was partly achieved through comparative analysis, for example BBC Hindi ran a video link between London and Delhi with a British MP of Indian origin, and senior Indian politicians on the similarities and differences between the two countries elections, whilst BBC Chinese organised an online forum for a question and answer of the UK’s ethnic Chinese candidates. The diasporas also formed a key link with BBC Urdu going to Bradford to look at immigration and multiculturalism, and the influence of clan politics, whilst BBC Bangla produced a video special from Bethnal Green and Bow, where the main candidates were all of Bangladeshi origin.

The UK election was BBC Global News’ most read story for many days online, with over 85% in our Global Minds survey agreeing that BBC Global News coverage improved their understanding of the key issues of the UK general election and 60% of respondents agreeing they wanted to find out more about UK politics and parties as a result of the coverage.

Fifa World Cup - June/July 2010

Securing the rights for the coverage was a fantastic opportunity to explore Africa and connect with audiences there. Ten Global News language services took part in the launch of our second Google translate experiment - World Cup Team Talk - while a special daily multimedia show, World Cup Have Your Say, allowed fans to exchange views via phone calls, emails, texts and tweets. Coverage during the tournament was creative and exploratory with a range of analytical features such as Africa Kicks - a journey that explored West Africa’s ‘football factory’ - the region in West Africa that produces the highest number of international players, looking at the political, economic and football hopes, dreams and challenges of this region in a series of multimedia reports. This followed extensive coverage earlier in the year of the Africa Cup of Nations.

Pakistan Floods - July 2010

As the worst floods in the region’s history submerged one-fifth of the country, BBC Urdu collaborated with the BBC World Service Trust to start broadcasts three times a day to provide vital information to flood victims. In many instances, officials came to know about the gravity of the situation in particular areas from our broadcasts. These Lifeline Pakistan broadcasts proved so popular that when we planned to end them after one month, several government officials, ministers and aid agencies requested us to continue them as a result of which we are still on air.

Chilean Miners - October 2010

The Chilean miners' rescue was a recent demonstration of how local audiences turn to the World Service as a point of reference whilst powerful events unfold - BBC Mundo's audiences on radio and mobile nearly doubled, with editorial leadership demonstrated by use of content in the main Spanish speaking media including the main newspaper in Chile using BBC Mundo's live text of the rescue.


Operating performance 2009/10

BBC World Service continued its work in delivering cost savings in order to meet its targets and cover rising costs. The organisation delivered over £6m of operating savings in the last financial year, and consequently £6m of restructuring charges were incurred, partly due to the restructuring of the senior management team which will deliver benefits commencing in 2010/11. These savings also helped the World Service to cope with the impact of the economic downturn.

The weaker pound increased costs both for international offices and on several international support contracts. However, the cost increase was partly mitigated by lower inflation in the UK which enabled savings to be made on staff costs and on contracts linked to RPI in the UK.


Capital expenditure was spread across a range of projects, the largest being the project to move BBC World Service to the W1 development in central London as part of the BBC’s new journalism centre. The move is planned for 2012 and the substantial capital commitment involved will continue to dominate capital expenditure up to that date.

The project to re-engineer the transmitter station and power facilities on Ascension Island is making good progress and will secure transmissions to West Africa over the years ahead.

Independent Auditors, KPMG, reported to the BBC Executive Board that BBC World Service financial statements for the financial year ended on 31 March 2010 gave a true and fair view of its affairs.

Reduction in baseline figure

Under the 2007 CSR settlement with the Government, funding for 2009/10 was set at £272 (£241m operating and £31m capital). The baseline figure was subsequently reduced by £3.3m as a result of the 2009 Budget, and reduced again by a further £7.6m as a result of savings announced by the new Government earlier this year (although this was partly mitigated by provision of £5.2m one-off funding for the current year). This means that the BBC World Service baseline has been cut by £10.9m since the original settlement agreed in 2007, prior to the HMG’s CSR announcement on 20 October this year. The 2009 cuts led to the cancellation and deferment of some projects, but this did not have a material adverse impact on existing operations.

For the current financial year 2010/11, funding has been reduced to £266m (£235m operating and £31m capital). The World Service is managing this reduction through the acceleration of savings plans and the deferral of projects. This has included a number of changes to the English schedule, announced in September 2010, which will result in the ending of regular drama output, and a reduction in music and sport output.

Unprecedented pressure on public spending, uncertainty over pension costs and exchange rates continue to make for a challenging environment, and will require careful planning over the coming months, throughout which delivering value to audiences and value for money to UK taxpayers will be at the forefront. Details of the CSR 2010 settlement and possible repercussions are set out below in Part 2.

Part 2: CSR 2010 settlement

Funding for BBC World Service and BBC Monitoring was set out as part of the Government’s Comprehensive Spending Review (2011/12 to 2014/15) announcement on 20 October.

In addition, the Government announced that BBC World Service and BBC Monitoring would be financed from the UK Television Licence Fee, rather than directly by Government, from 2014/15 for BBC World Service, and from 2013/14 for BBC Monitoring. Until very recently, the BBC was working on the basis that the CSR settlement would affect funding for BBC World Service and BBC Monitoring only, but it is now clear that this is a fundamental change for the BBC as a whole.

As part of the agreement the Licence Fee period was extended to the end of the Royal Charter in six years time - December 2016. This agreement gives the BBC financial and political stability - with no further debate about the future of the Licence Fee in that period.

BBC World Service funding settlement and its implications

BBC World Service has received formal notification from the Foreign Office confirming an overall 16% real terms reduction in funding over the four years of the settlement. Although this settlement compares well to similar publicly-funded organisations, the World Service faces other financial pressures such as the extra costs of the BBC’s pension deficit, so the impact will be greater, and there will be some difficult choices ahead. 

The World Service Board will now spend time looking carefully at the detail of the World Service funding settlement. Existing plans will need to be revised, including those for investments in new services for Pakistan and Afghanistan, and the necessary approvals to make changes will need to be obtained. However, the intention is to make an announcement about World Service savings for the next financial year by the end of November 2010.

The figures are as follows:


GiA Operating


GiA Capital


2010/11 (current period)



CSR 2011/12-2014/15










2014/15 (transfer to Licence Fee)



Over and above the 16% real terms cut, BBC World Service has to deal with a number of other exceptional cost pressures. The biggest of these by far is the cost of employer contributions to the BBC pension deficit. While the recently announced changes to the BBC pension scheme will reduce the size of the deficit and the cost of ongoing contributions significantly, the World Service's share of the anticipated rise in pension costs is still expected to be somewhere in the range of £11m to £18m per annum (possibly £15m).

During financial year 2011/12, largely as a result of the extra pension contribution, our current model suggests that BBC World Service must deliver savings of approximately £24m. The following year we expect to need to find £13m savings, the year after £12m, and in the last year £18m - giving a total of approximately £67m savings over the four years - although this figure may be lower, or higher, when the outcome of the pension valuation and other cost pressures are clarified. This means that we expect to need to save more than 25% of current costs.

Every part of the World Service will make a significant contribution, but it is not possible to save this amount of money just by "salami slicing". An exercise involving staff in shaping strategy called World Service Choices took place last year, and BBC World Service will be drawing on some of these ideas in its planning.

Some of the proposals under consideration include: cutting further programmes from the English schedule, reducing short wave distribution significantly and cutting the radio output of some services where audiences are too low to justify continued production at current levels. It is possible that we will also need to close some language services, although it is not possible at the time of writing to say how many services will close or which ones they will be. These changes need to be approved by the BBC Trust and language service closures specifically need approval from the Foreign Secretary.

However, this alone will not be enough to allow BBC World Service to reach its savings target of £67m. Further steps towards multimedia and multilingual journalism will need to be taken, emphasising the vital importance of collaboration, and the need to consider all audiences all of the time. We will reinforce our networks of journalism - inside the BBC and outside with our partners. Huge steps have already been taken towards further integration within Global News and as part of the BBC’s journalism community.

The move in 2012 to W1 - the BBC’s multimedia news centre at Broadcasting House - will help maximise the impact and cost-effectiveness of our news operation. By tapping into joint resources, we can exploit that opportunity, organising ourselves efficiently and flexibly. There will be opportunities to invent new ways of working that will deliver enormous efficiencies as well as creative benefits.

A recent example of the benefits of the greater levels of collaboration we have been encouraging was when in September, President Obama chose to give an interview to BBC Persian because of its impact. Persian TV could not have done it without close collaboration with BBC Newsgathering. BBC World Service was, in turn, able to share an exclusive interview with the rest of the BBC, for UK and international audiences alike. This kind of editorial collaboration and reliance on shared content production to serve our audiences helps deliver efficiency.

Training and development programmes will focus on equipping members of new multimedia, multilingual teams to work in new ways. Further details of these new joint units will be announced later in November.

BBC World Service’s key advantage for its audiences is its uniquely global perspective. We will work to improve on how we deliver that - with the stories our audiences most want in the key genres - business, health, sport, technology and more.

BBC Monitoring funding settlement

BBC Monitoring’s funding will decrease by 6.5% in cash terms for each of the two years before BBCM transfers into the Licence Fee in 2013/14 - a total cut of 18% in real terms. This means that the contribution from the Cabinet Office will fall from £23.2m this year to £20.2m in 2012/13. However, BBCM faces additional employers’ pension costs (as does the wider organisation) - to fund its share of the deficit - of around £2.5m-£4m a year. So, in the worse case scenario, BBCM would need to make cuts of nearly £7m a year.

Given the scale of this, the potential impact on BBCM's capabilities and the costs of restructuring, BBCM's Executive Direction Team, will be working through the implications with BBCM's government stakeholders and other organisations, including the BBC.

This presents some extremely tough challenges, but we will be working hard to reach a

conclusion recognising the role BBCM has, both as part of the BBC's journalism family, and as a valued provider of open source information to governments and other organisations around the world.

Licence Fee funding

The BBC-wide settlement with the Government gives the whole organisation clarity and stability in its funding for the next six years. This financial stability is hugely important, especially having clarity for six years.

In addition, the move away from direct government funding will reinforce further BBC World Service’s reputation for independence. While the BBC has always had editorial control of the World Service, there is now an increased clarity about the World Service’s independence from Government agendas. Overseas audiences will know that the services provided are funded directly by the British public, fully independent of commercial or political agendas.

The BBC Trust Chairman has said that "the new arrangements will ensure that the World Service remains a vibrant, independent service that brings impartial news to people around the world, while strengthening the BBC's ability to bring international news to UK Licence Fee payers".

The BBC and the Foreign Office will continue to work together to ensure appropriate governance arrangements are in place once the transfer to Licence Fee funding has taken place. 

The following commitments concerning BBC World Service form the basis of the Government’s new Agreement with the BBC Trust:

· The Government will continue to fund World Service at CSR-agreed levels for 2011/12, 2012/13 and 2013/14. The BBC will be allowed to fund any World Service restructuring costs, at its discretion, during this period. The World Service will become part of the licence fee funded BBC from 2014/15.

· The BBC Trust sets the overall strategic direction of the BBC including the World Service.

· The BBC is independent in all matters concerning the content of World Service output, the times and manner in which this is supplied and in the management of its affairs. The BBC’s Editorial Guidelines, Values and Standards are set by the BBC Trust and apply to the BBC World Service.

· The BBC will continue as now to set the objectives, priorities and targets for the BBC World Service with the Foreign Secretary and to obtain the written approval of the Foreign Secretary for the opening or closure of any language service.

· After extracting an efficiency dividend, the BBC will commit to providing sufficient investment in World Service to support its current plans for the period.

BBC World Service will be strengthened by its ability to draw on the full resources of the BBC, one of the world’s leading news operations, without being constrained by the barriers that have been required by separate funding sources. The BBC has committed to providing sufficient investment in the World Service to support its current plans, while also ensuring that efficiencies from the new funding model are fully extracted. The principle that the BBC is independent in all matters concerning the output of the World Service and the management of its affairs is enshrined in the agreement with Government.

The BBC’s fifth public purpose is ‘to bring the UK to the world and the world to the UK’ and the provision of impartial, independent news of high quality is at the heart of this global mission.  Through this the BBC can strengthen the UK’s global reputation, enhance the UK’s relevance in the world’s most rapidly developing markets and bring unbiased information where it is needed most.  BBC World Service already operates as an integral part of the BBC’s worldwide newsgathering and production operation. While the BBC has not always funded the World Service, it has always been obliged to offer global news.

Licence Fee payers can already access and benefit from a number of the services provided by World Service in the UK.  For example the English radio service is available on DAB, digital, satellite and cable TV and online and all the foreign language websites are available in the UK, which also provide access to all language radio programmes live, with many on demand.  Through these means Licence Fee payers are able to access a deeper range of international news.

The identity and heritage of BBC World Service and its commitment to international audiences will remain intact, but its passion for its audiences, its programmes and its values - will play on the widest possible stage - for the UK and for the whole world.

27 October 2010