CNN, JCTV to launch exclusive CNNj in Japan

TOKYO : Japanese television viewers will be able to see their own exclusive CNN channel with the launch of CNNj in March 2003. CNN and Japan Cable television (JCTV) have teamed up to provide this unique new service tailored specifically for Japanese viewers, with hours of CNN programming never previously seen by international audiences.

An official release states that CNNj combines content from three of CNN's award-winning networks: CNN/US, CNNfn and CNN International. This new channel, made possible because of JCTV's longstanding partnership with CNN for nearly 20 years, also comprises increased Japanese languaging of news and feature programmes.

President, CNN International Networks Chris Cramer said, "Thanks to the strong support of our long-time partner, JCTV we have been able to take this important initiative in Japan, the largest market for CNN in Asia. By making this strategic investment to create a unique CNN channel we are proving our commitment to cater to the specific viewing preferences of Japanese audiences."

JCTV continues to be the exclusive distribution partner of CNN in Japan and will increase its hours of Japanese translation by seven hours a week, to a total of 126 hours per week. During times of major breaking news JCTV will further increase its bilingual service to translate the breaking news as it happens.

The release states that CNNj is CNN International's seventh regionalised feed and offers a new schedule exclusively created for Japanese audiences based on audience feedback and market research.

The new channel will be a combination of popular US news programmes including American Morning with Paula Zahn and Connie Chung plus international and regional news, business and feature programming.

JCTV and CNN have had a strong business partnership since CNN became available in Japan in 1982, the first country outside the U.S to distribute CNN. CNN is currently available via Sky PerfecTV!, Sky PerfecTV!2 and cable to four million households and 100,000 hotel rooms, the release says.

JCTV is an affiliate of Asahi Shimbun and TV Asahi. In 1971 it stared as the first English language cable TV station in Japan.

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