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Ambassador Fu Ying Visited ITN
2007/06/23

On 22 June 2007, Ambassador Fu Ying visited ITN and had an informal discussion with ITN's Chief Executive Mark Wood, Editor in chief of ITV News David Mannion, Editor of Channel 4 News Jim Gray.

Mr. Wood welcomed Fu's visit and indicated it is necessary for ITN to expand China-related reports in conformity with "China fever" which is sweeping the international society owing to China's economic development. Mr. Wood recalled the process of setting up Beijing bureau and running China Report in 2006 and expressed thanks for support and assistance from Chinese side.

Fu Ying said media is an important channel to transmit message to the public. China values the role of media and pays close attention to the influence of ITN's reports on China in Britain. Sending back lots of reports on China's economy, politics, environmental protection and Olympic Games which are objective in general, ITN Beijing bureau serves as a bridge to promote the British people's understanding of China. The Chinese Embassy in the UK is willing to facilitate and assist ITN to report on China.

David Mannion, Editor in chief of ITV news, mentioned China's influence on the world is increasing following its rising international status. As from senior government officials to common people have practically experienced China's influence, the public have strong interest in news and information about China. It is necessary for ITN to reinforce reports on China to meet social needs. Correspondents from all over the world could size up and report the situation faster since Chinese government increased the openness of all domestic work. After Regulations on Reporting Activities in China by Foreign Journalists during the Beijing Olympic Games and the Preparatory Period was implemented in January, it's more convenient and smooth for foreign journalists including ITN's Beijing correspondents to gather and report news in China. ITN is greatly inspired by Chinese government's efforts to provide relaxed environment for foreign journalists and hopes the relevant regulations will remain in force after the 2008 Olympic Games.

Fu Ying emphasized that facilitating interviews of international media during the Beijing Olympic Games is an established stand of Chinese government, and China will provide service for the media in line with this spirit after the 2008 Olympic Games. However, the improvement of environment for foreign media to gather news in China depends on both good intentions of Chinese side and foreign media's abidance with Chinese laws and regulations as well as professional ethics of journalists. Fu Ying pointed out that Chinese government does not abstain from negative repots because exposing negative issues helps the government to make improvement, and Chinese media has been playing an important role in this aspect. International media nevertheless should report China objectively and accurately instead of acting on hearsay evidence or even distorting the facts. It is to be hoped that international media will keep to the principle of objectivity, integrity and continuity when reporting negative social phenomena, not only report on the event itself, but cover comprehensive and follow-up reports on the whole process as well as disposal and improvement so as not to leave the impression on the readers that the exposed problems cannot be resolved forever. Mr.Wood agreed with this and hopes Chinese government will provide facilitations for foreign journalist to conduct follow-up reports on the problems.

John Snow, Presenter of Channel 4 News mentioned the international media, including ITN, is interested in not only China's own affairs but its role and stand in international affairs. They look forward to finding out Chinese government's stand in the issues such as Africa, Iran nuclear issue, North Korea nuclear issue and climate change, having access to the information on international affairs and interviewing Chinese officials. The outside perhaps form a view on China based on some inaccurate estimate and judgement without direct response from China.

Fu Ying mentioned the Chinese government is furthering making government affairs public and the State Council Information Office is actively pushing forward establishing spokesperson system in all regions and departments in China. With more and more government agencies being willing to accept interview of foreign journalists, it will be easier to understand policies of Chinese government. Spokesman system of Ministry of Foreign Affairs provides easy access to China's concern on international affairs. Fu Ying also listened to the opinions of the feasibility of holding briefings every day during Beijing Olympic Games and foreign media to use relay vehicles and satellite equipments in China.

Accompanied by Mr. Wood, Fu Ying had a tour of ITN's departments, including animation studio, master-control room and broadcast studio and had a friendly conversation with staff.

Found in 1955, ITN is a private-owned company to produce TV and radio programs for its two branches, namely ITV News and Channel 4. These two branches set up resident report stations in Beijing in October 2006.

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