Thursday April 18 2013

Zambian postpones digital migration to next year

The Zambian government has postponed its plans to switch from analogue to digital terrestrial television broadcasting television from this year to next year, the Post of Zambia reported on Wednesday.

Zambia had made plans to partially switch off from analogue to digital this year, earlier than the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) deadline of June 17, 2015. But Deputy Minister of Information and Broadcasting Mwansa Kapeya said the plan has been put on hold, saying the country will only switch to digital television next year. According to him, there were "a few logistical problems" that had forced the government to put off switching from analogue to digital to next year from the earlier plan to have the process implemented this year. He however did not disclose the specific logistical problems faced by the government in implementing its digital migration agenda. The ITU, a United Nations agency for information and communication technologies, had set June 17, 2015 as the deadline for all member countries to migrate from analogue to digital terrestrial television broadcasting.

But countries within the Southern African Development Community (SADC) regional bloc adopted Dec. 31, 2013, as the deadline for digital migration. This is meant to give countries in the region ample time to address teething challenges that may arise in the migration process ahead of the ITU deadline. In February this year, the Zambian government constituted a technical team to guide the southern African nation in migrating from analogue to digital terrestrial television broadcasting.

S. Africa to supply Brazil with advanced security vehicles


A prominent South African defense group has won a contract to provide Brazil police with advanced armored vehicles.

Paramount Group, Africa's largest privately-owned defense and aerospace company, on Tuesday said it will supply Brazil with internal security vehicles. The vehicles would be used by the special police operations battalion, the shock police battalion within the military police and the coordination of special resources battalion of the civil police in Brazil. The vehicle contains advanced cameras and censors. The vehicle-maker said in a statement that the deal came after African leaders met the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) leaders at the 5th BRICS Summit in the South African port city of Durban on March 26-27.

In the BRICS summit last month in Durban, the first working group aimed at intensifying defense cooperation between member countries was established. The vehicle-producer said,"Brazil is one of the most dynamic economies in the world, its government expects to equip its security forces with the most advanced equipment to protect the significant investment in its infrastructure and citizens." Brazil is currently preparing to host the world cup in 2014, and this deal will assist in ensuring the safety of those taking part in the world cup, according to the statement."Sharing defense and security equipment represents a new level of international trade cooperation, and this deal not only demonstrates strengthened alliances between Africa and Brazil but the unity of the BRICS alliance", the statement said.