DW Director General Erik Bettermann presented DW’s new program structure and agreed to strengthening partnerships with Asian broadcasters at the 49th General Assembly of the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU).
South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak officially opened the general assembly in Seoul, which was attended by around 500 delegates from key Asian broadcasters. Erik Bettermann took the opportunity when meeting the President to highlight DW’s engagement in Asia, which the South Korean President warmly welcomed. ABU President Kim in-Kyu, head of the Korea Broadcasting System (KBS), also praised the important role of DW in fostering media cooperation between Europe and Asia.
« In order to attract the next generations, especially here in Asia which is home to half of the world’s citizens, it’s critical for broadcasters to respond to the challenges and seize the opportunities of digitalization, » Bettermann said during his keynote speech at a seminar held in conjunction with the general assembly. ABU and the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, a non-profit German political foundation, co-organized the event.
Radical technological changes brought about by the Internet, mobile devices and media convergence make it essential for the media to continuously adapt itself, Bettermann added in his speech titled « Beyond broadcasting – Public service broadcasters and the digital tomorrow. »
DW’s director general was joined by the director of DW’s International Relations Department, Klaus Bergmann, who presented Deutsche Welle’s multimedia strategy. Adelheid Feilcke, head of the DW’s Culture Department, also contributed, speaking at the conference about training and re-training journalists in an era of media convergence.
At the sidelines of the general assembly, Bettermann held numerous meetings with directors of broadcasters from Asian countries such as Japan, South Korea, India, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Bangladesh regarding future collaborations. Representatives of South Korea’s KBS and DW’s director general reached a content sharing agreement and made plans to jointly host an event relating to the media’s role in the political landscape.