IMG_3651Paris, 10-11 Dezember 2015

The new AMARC International Board met in Paris to initiate the process for strategic planning towards the implementation of the strategic plan voted by the General Assembly in Ghana in August 2014. The meeting took place in the UNESCO headquarters, in central Paris.

In attendance were Min Shahi (Nepal) Executive Vice President, Palmira Velasco (Mosambik) Schatzmeister, Vice Presidents of Regions; for Africa Karamoko Bamba (Côte d’Ivoire); for Asia-Pacific: Ram Bhat (Indien); for Europe: Soledad Galiana; the Vice-President of the “Women’s International Network of AMARC” Adeline Nsimire Balika (Democratic Republic of Congo), and the following Vice Presidents: Marie-Guyrlène Justin (Haiti), Yengwayo Kutta (South African Republic), Damian Loreti (Argentinien), and Sophie Toupin (Kanada), and former president and coordinator of the Legislative Programme, Maria Pia Matta; regional Asia-Pacific coordinator, Suman Basnet and AMARC general secretariat, Franc Diasio.

AMARC International president, Emmanuel Boutterin highlighted how this was the first opportunity of the new board to meet face to face and create the synergies among the different AMARC regions to work together on behalf of the members.


UNESCO and AMARC partnership

Mirta Lourenco, UNESCO Chief of Section, Communication and Information Sector, welcomed the Board members. Lourenco works with media pluralism and they work in five axis: gender equality in media at all levels, from content to working procedures; education and media training, including new technologies; World Radio Day (AMARC is part of the committee that organises that day); Youth participation in radio, a sector clearly underrepresented in media; and production of independent media content.

For UNESCO AMARC is very important, as it brings together radios that work in the community, and UNESCO will promote among world governments the existence of community radios. We want to work very closely with AMARC. We want to work closely to create a very strong AMARC,” stated Lourenco.

IMG_3667Digitalisation in Europe: DAB+ perspective

Jean-Marc Dubreuil, programme manager France, World DMB, presented the work of his organisation to the International Board. It is planned a similar presentation by the representative of the DMR standard in the the future.

Dubreil explain that due to a full spectrum in FM in some countries, there was a need for digitalisation. In UK, Norwegen, Switzerland and Denmark, there is a high number of listeners of digital radio listeners. In Switzerland and Norway have decided to switch off FM (2017 und 2020 respectively). Now in Germany, Germany and Netherlands and Italy there have been an increment in the number of digital listeners as the number of digital broadcasters have increased. In Italy, 70% of the population can now receive digital radio. The Netherlands decided to initiate digitalisation in 2013, and integrate all media sectors in the platforms. Some other European countries, such as France, Belgium and Poland have been considering digital radio. In France they are now in the move to cover 93% of the population with DAB+. In France they are starting with regional and local services. The Flemish public broadcaster is already broadcasting in DAB+ in Belgium, and he French speaking public broadcast will start next year. The Polish regulator has decided to postpone digitalisation.

There is an issue with DRM+ due to the limited number of receivers for (DRM30) or not at all for DRM+. This is a problem for this standard, and if they don’t ensure that there In UK, Switzerland and Poland they are experimenting with small scale DAB+, which will require a initial capital investment of 80,000 euros for the transmitter.

According to Dubreuil, DAB offer more choice, better reception and new features to the listeners, while for broadcasters it brings innovation, better targeting of listeners and being cost-efficient, and a social level, it is a greener distribution, greater plurality and driver safety and security. Phone networks cannot sustain high volume of users, that digital broadcasting can do. He also pointed out that for digitalisation to be successful, you need to have good content and coverage, to ensure devices are accessible and cheap (including cars). In France there have been this kind of communication.
Dubreuil considers that DAB is the core future platform for radio, mostly because it is the standard being introduced by European governments.


Freedom of Expression and Journalists safety

Sylvie Coudray, Chief of Section for the Communication and Information Sector (CI) of UNESCo made a presentation on the Freedom of Expression and Journalist Safety which UNESCO has been running for the last 30 Jahre.

UNESCO is involved in investigations in different parts of the world contacting to stakeholders and governments. Karamoko Bamba highlighted how in West Africa, specially in Mali and Ivory Coasts, many journalists have been murder. Sylvie Coudray highlighted that the issue of impunity is key, as it is the fact that there is not proper investigation and consequently no punishment, it doesn’t help when it comes to guaranty the safety of journalists. There would be a meeting in February dealing with safety of journalists and on impunity. AMARC will be represented and the meeting will focus on how to provide tools for security and against impunity against journalists and media, be sharing best practice experience, engagement with governments, and exploring new mechanisms to ensure journalists’ Sicherheit.

IMG_3675World Radio Day 2016

Jean-Francois Riffaud, Campaign coordinator World Radio Day, spoke about the preparations towards World RAdio Day (13 Februar 2016). This year the focus would beRadio in Emergency and Disaster Situations”. anit would look into five specific situations:

  • Freed of expression (a disaster or emergency situation shouldn’t be a excuse to curtail freedom of expression)
  • Radio empower survivors and vulnerable people, whose right to privacy is to be respected. This is why UNESCO defends community radios, as they are the voice of vulnerable people.
  • Radio saves lives. Radio prepares people to response to catastrophes and helps them to rebuild their files after a disaster.
  • Immediate accessibility of radio frequencies is essential to saving lives. There are emergency frequencies that are reserved for these kind of situations, but are not respected by some radio operators.

UNESCO has already created a media campaign and it is preparing materials to highlight the five message, as they work in both visibility and content issues.They are preparing short interviews, documentaries, elements and stories to build your programmes, and jingles to promote Radio World Day. The website will be launched on 11 Dezember 2016, where participants will be able to register.

UNESCO will be creating 12 hours of programming that they will be broadcasting on 13 Dezember. These are been produced by different public an commercial stations.It is possible to collaborate with this broadcast by contacting the Radio World Day organisers.

WPFD2015Montreal, April 30, 2015. On the occasion of World Press Freedom Day 2015, die World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) launches its International legal protection and global advocacy program for the community media sector. Despite great regulatory advancements of the community media movement at the international level, on the national level, the lack of clear legal frameworks, or their complete absence, is still an impediment to the full development of the community media sector as a public space for dialogue and debate.

Recently, this dichotomy became evidence. In 2014, Radio Estéreo Luz and Radio La Voz de Sonora, located in the western department of Quiché, Guatemala, have been shut down and their equipment have been seized. In Egypt, Internet Radio Horytna was recently persecuted because of illegal internet streaming. In April 2015, in Mexico, Abel Manuel Bautista Raymundo, founder and director of Radio Espacio 96.1 FM in Juxtlahuaca, Oaxaca state, was murdered. In Schweden, commercial radios are still operating on community radio frequencies. This indicates that community radio licences are becoming less a resource for non-profit associations and more an opportunity for commercial operators who can circumvent the formal commercial radio sector and its official responsibilities, including concession fees to the government.

These recent examples show the need of an International legal program for community radios. “With this program – commented Francesco Diasio, Secretary General of AMARC – we want to address the legal issues related to community broadcasters with both a proactive and reactive approach. The first approach will foster and enhance the policy work to be done with other Civil Society Organizations and policy makers to ensure that frequency planning, technical standards for telecommunications and radio, and development resources are giving a high priority to the needs of civil society. Andererseits, the creation of a legal office will support the community media sector under the perspective of access (new broadcasters) and defence (broadcasters in danger)."

Community radios are front-line actors in the defense of the right to communicate. They remain the guarantors of pluralism, defenders of freedom of information and exchange of ideas. Their contribution is crucial for the exercise of freedom of expression and freedom of the press.


Montreal, März 6, 2015. Die Weltverband der Gemeinschaft Broadcasters (AMARC) is joining forces with UNESCO and the Global Alliance on Media and Gender für die Women Make the News 2015 initiative. Under the theme ‘’Yes we must! Reaching Gender Equality in the Media by 2030’', this initiative aims to push forward the involvement of women in all spheres of media, from the pen, to the microphone to higher management.

All around the world, community radios are a privileged place where women can make their voices heard, find a space for discussion, Empowerment und emancipation. These radios are vectors of education, culture, knowledge sharing and development. Through them, women can enforce their role as major social actors.

Im März 8, we celebrate women’s contribution to the struggle for freedom of expression and the right to communicate. We also seize the opportunity to repeat that too many women still suffer from discriminations in the media field and that we must work toward an equal representation on the airwaves“, said Maria Pía Matta, AMARC’s President.

Throughout its projects and as part of its mission, AMARC defends Geschlecht Gleichheit and reinforces the importance of the role played by women in the field of communication and media. Launched at the beginning of 2015, ‘’On the road to Beijing+20’’, an international audio series produced by AMARC, in collaboration with UN Women celebrates the voices of women around the world, highlights important issues related to women and shares stories supporting a universal cause. Through these programs, AMARC wishes to empower women journalist, commentator, and journalist and give them air time.Another important tool towards achieving gender equality in the radio stations is the Gender Policy für Community Radio (GP4CR) which was developed by AMARC-WIN Asia Pacific and adopted by the World General Assembly of AMARC in 2010 in La Plata, Argentinien. It is available in multiple languages.

Im März 8, AMARC calls on all its members, partners and friends to continue to push towards gender equality and to pledge for equal air-time for women. Together, let’s achieve gender equality in the media by 2030!

Through services to members, networking and projects implementation, der Weltverband der Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) gathers more than 4,000 Community Radios, federations and community media stakeholders in more than 150 Länder. The International Network of Women (SIEG) of AMARC is a large assembly of women communicators working to ensure women’s right to participate and communicate through the community radio movement.

26feb10You can find now the audios of February of the campaignOn the road to Beijing +20at the International Secretariat’s web of AMARC. This month three countries are the protagonists: Kanada (Féminisme d’hier, égalité d’aujourd’hui?”), Tunesien (La voilà journaliste) and Indonesia (Stop domestic violence for a better future).

This campaign is part of the agreement of the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) and UN Women, a series of radio on the international framework Beijing +20. These productions provide a comparative perspective between 1995 und 2015, where we were and where we are now, and the collaborations come from all over the world.


Invitation to the General Assembly of AMARC to be held during the 11th AMARC World Conference 10-14 August 2015 in Accra, Ghana

Dear colleagues,
In accordance with the provisions of the statutes of AMARC, as President of AMARC, and on behalf of the International Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that the General Assembly of AMARC will be held in Accra, Ghana 10-14 August 2015 in the frame of the 11th World Conference organized with the collaboration of GCRN, Ghana Community Radio Network.

This Assembly will provide a unique opportunity for AMARC members to analyse and reflect about the challenges of our organization in the coming years, to establish an Action Plan for 2015/ 2019, as well as the possibility to vote for the women and men who will serve on the new International board of Directors. The International Board warmly invites you to join us and us with your voices and initiatives.

Maria Pia Matta


Accra, Ghana, 10-14 August

Draft Agenda

-Opening remarks and procedure.

-Approval of minutes GA La Plata 2010.

-Approval of new members.

-Reports of the Regional and International Boards.

-Reports of the Regional and International Secretariat.

-Presentation of new Board candidates.

-Presentation of motions.

-Elections of International Board.

-AMARC strategic plans and budget 2015 2019.

-Assembly resolutions.

-Any other business.

-Closing session.