Qatar Media Corporation (QMC) celebrated yesterday the golden jubilee of Qatar Radio, marking 50 years of pioneering work in the field of broadcast media in the Gulf region.
The event was attended by HE the Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa al-Thani, HE the Speaker of the Shura (Advisory) Council Ahmed bin Abdullah bin Zaid al-Mahmoud, HE the Chairman of QMC Sheikh Hamad bin Thamer al-Thani, HE the CEO of QMC Sheikh Abdulrahman bin Hamad al-Thani, Director of Qatar Radio Mohamed Nasser al-Mohannadi, diplomats, dignitaries, invited guests and employees of Qatar Radio.
HE the Chairman of QMC Sheikh Hamad bin Thamir al-Thani
HE the CEO of OMC Sheikh Abdulrahman bin Hamad al-Thani
Addressing the audience, Sheikh Hamad bin Thamer talked about the hurdles crossed to establish Qatar Radio in 1968, as there were no adequate media infrastructure like newspapers or magazines in the country at that time . "However, the wise leadership of the country knew the significant role of radio in spreading knowledge and serving development efforts, so Qatar Radio was established with the help of Arab expertise regarding the content and management, while international companies were engaged for the engineering and technical aspects to create the first national broadcaster in the country which is also considered the first means of media to be set up in the country."
He said that within a short period, Qatar Radio's programmes became regular due to the hard work of the pioneers. He further stressed that Qatar Radio has maintained its position on the local media scene in spite of the fast development of other media, social media in particular. Besides Arabic round the clock, Qatar Radio has also been broadcasting in English, French and Urdu, catering to a large section of the country's residents.
Sheikh Hamad bin Thamer thanked His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani for his great support for the development of the radio broadcast sector.
Director of Qatar Radio Mohamed Nasser al-Mohannadi pointed out that Qatar Radio has always been working to improve its performance and develop its work environment. He also thanked the pioneers, who helped in making such a success story of the radio.
HE Sheikh Abdulrahman honoured a good number of the pioneer employees of Qatar Radio, contributors and cooperators for their efforts and distinguished work in different fields. He said that such people have been the driving force behind Qatar Radio's success story.
The first programme of Qatar Radio was aired on June 25, 1968 while the test broadcast started on April 27, 1968. After the passage of one year , the duration of broadcast was raised from five hours to nine hours. In 1970, it reached 13 and a half hours and in 1972, it reached 19 hours, with round the clock broadcast starting in 2003. There is also an ongoing project to digitalise all the old and heritage content of the radio to preserve it for posterity.