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NPR to Broadcast From Berlin on Current VOA Frequency

NPR to Broadcast From Berlin on Current VOA Frequency

NPR will go to great lengths to expand its audience; soon it will begin broadcasting from its first standalone station – in Berlin.
NPR streams programming on its Web site and offers podcasts, in addition to reaching other countries through cable and satellite offerings. But this new station represents a different way to extend its brand.
German broadcast regulators have awarded a frequency reserved for a U.S. broadcaster to NPR. Historically, the city designated a frequency each to the U.K., France and the U.S., said spokeswoman Andi Sporkin.
The seven-year license in Berlin was held by Voice of America but expires this spring and since the fall of communism in Europe, U.S. government broadcasters don’t deem its presence in Berlin essential. The Broadcasting Board of Governors last week proposed $671 million in budget cuts for publicly financed broadcasting services as it shifts VOA away from an English-language focus to the Middle East, as has been reported here.
NPR was chosen by a branch of the German government from among several applicants, she said. To keep costs low, NPR will mostly re-air American programming and will receive a low-cost license from the German government.
“We’re not staffing a station and creating a newsroom,” said Sporkin, who added the network would provide material for the station from its NPR World service and also work with non-profits in Germany to create a weekly one-hour program.