Image Nation is looking to establish a 24-hour Chinese television channel in the Middle East to capitalise on growing interest in the world’s most populous country, as reported by The National.
The Abu Dhabi-based media and entertainment company reportedly plans to build on the success of its free-to-air Quest Arabiya channel, which has broadcast Chinese programmes to the Middle East once a week since early 2017.
Chinese content on Quest Arabiya includes lifestyle and culture and is dubbed into Arabic rather than subtitled, as per the report by The National.
The new channel will reportedly have its own brand. Speaking to the press ahead of President Xi Jinping’s state visit, Michael Garin, Chief Executive of Chinese content for Quest Arabiya, said that audience engagement with Chinese programmes was high with Arab audiences and was the prime reason for launching the 24-hour channel.
In 2016, Image Nation and its Chinese counterpart, the China Intercontinental Communication Centre, had agreed to a partnership that established a million-dollar international film fund, ‘The Culture China – Image Nation Content Fund’, to invest in commercial film and television.
Quest Arabiya started its Chinese programming in 2017 across 22 countries in the Arab World.
Accoring to Garin, collaboration with Image Nation would help in tapping into existing expertise in the region and sharing the cost for recruiting staff for programming, operations, on-air promotion and finance.
Elaborating on the vision, Garin said: “China is an important source of future tourism for the country and our hope is with this partnership that we introduce China to this part of the world but the long-term project is also to introduce our part of the world to China.”