BBC Japan to go off air from 30 April

MUMBAI: BBC Japan will cease transmission from 30 April. The reason for the channel's shutdown, barely two years after launch is because local distribution partner Japan MediArk Co (JMC), has declared its inability to financially support the channel any longer.

Launched in 2004, BBC Japan was the second channel designed exclusively for one country. Prior to this, BCC Worldwide had launched BBC America in 1997.

According to information posted on, BBC Worldwide has received a notification from JMC that it no longer has the financial means to honour its contractual commitments to distribute BBC Japan.

The JMC’s shareholders will not be providing any further financial support. This decision results in JMC no longer being able to continue distribution of the channel after 30 April.

The statement posted on the website also stated that this decision has been taken without any consultation with BBC Worldwide and is beyond the corporation’s control. The corporation is actively seeking alternative ways to continue to provide the service in Japan.

BBC Worldwide managing director Darren Childs said, “We are extremely disappointed to announce that, due to the apparent decision of the JMC shareholders to no longer support JMC, BBC Japan may have to end transmission."

"We are looking to replace the channel in the market as soon as possible, and hope to announce shortly how BBC Japan’s loyal customers will be able to receive the channel in the future. In the meantime, we extend our sincere apologies to subscribers of the channel who have been inconvenienced by the decision of JMC,” he adds.

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