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BBC launches its first marketing campaign across Afghanistan

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MUMBAI: BBC World Service has launched its first marketing campaign in Afghanistan, promoting its Pashto and Dari language broadcasts on FM across the country

The ongoing two-month campaign promotes the ever-increasing BBC FM network in the country's six major cities: Ghazni, Herat, Jalalabad, Kabul, Kandahar and Mazar-e-Sharif.

Working with a leading Kabul-based full service agency, Aina-Darya Communications, World Service has developed a highly visible bi-lingual Pashto and Dari campaign promoting BBC FM availability on billboards, TV, radio and print ads.

BBC World Service controller, marketing, communications and audiences Alan Booth says, "This is our first ever advertising campaign in Afghanistan. As the country's market continues to develop, we are keen to consolidate our position in its modern media scene. A recent survey in the rural and urban areas of five provinces of Afghanistan suggested that the BBC is one of the most popular international broadcasters there, with our programmes in Pashto, Dari and other languages reaching almost 70 per cent of the population."

World Service has 17 FM frequencies in key towns across Afghanistan, including Kabul 89.0FM and 101.6FM (in Dari and Pashto), Mazar-e-Sharif 89.0FM (Dari), Jalalabad 89.0FM (Pashto), Herat 89.2FM (Dari), Kandahar 90.0FM (Pashto) and Ghazni 88.3FM (Pashto).

BBC programming is also re-broadcast via partnerships with two local media providers, Internews and Equal Access. World Service has been broadcasting to Afghanistan for many decades, providing programming in Pashto and Dari, now supplemented by a daily Uzbek programme.

In addition to news and current affairs programmes keeping listeners informed of the latest developments in Afghanistan, the region and the rest of the world, the BBC also offers thought-provoking discussions and audience interactivity on regional and Afghan domestic topics.

The BBC programmes regularly feature newsmakers from its Kabul studios, involving them in call-in programmes. The BBC also offers its audiences in Afghanistan entertainment and feature shows.

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