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BBC World narrows gap on CNN in Asia Pacific

HONG KONG - BBC World has been confirmed as the fastest growing international news channel in the Asia-Pacific region, according to the latest International Air Travellers Survey.

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Since the previous survey in 2000, BBC World viewership has grown by 6% to 13%, while other channels have suffered. CNN dropped by 24% from 26.1% to 19.8%, and CNBC was down by 34% from 10.4% to 6.9%.

The channel's strength among key audience targets saw it ranked second among frequent business travellers and first - ahead of CNN - among Europeans holidaymaking in Asia.

The IATS survey measures the viewership of international television channels, and the readership of international publications among air travellers.

The survey included Japan for the first time, where BBC World ranked second out of the eight channels among those interviewed in Osaka airport.

Among visitors travelling to Asia from the rest of the world, the gap between those watching BBC World and CNN has narrowed by more than half. BBC World now has more viewers each day (13.0%) than CNBC attracts in a month (12.8%).

The growth in audience reflects BBC World's increasing distribution in households and hotels across the Asia Pacific region as well as its investment in business news and travel-related programming for the region.

Jeremy Nye, head of research and planning at BBC World, said: "Travel has always been an important part of our viewers’ lives and BBC World has reflected this in its schedule with award-winning weekend travelogue programmes such as Michael Palin’s Hemingway Adventure, Great Railway Journeys and Benedict Allen’s Edge of Blue Heaven all forming part of our on-going VOYAGER strand. We have combined this with the weekly travel business programme, Fast Track, for business travellers alongside the popular leisure series Holiday."

IATS Asia-Pacific 2002 is a syndicated research study conducted by EDR. IATS Asia-Pacific 2002 was carried out in June and July 2002 among a sample of 11,615 travelers aged 18+ departing on scheduled international flights from eight major airports: Bangkok, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Osaka, Seoul, Singapore and Taipei.

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