Azerbaijan has approved a programme of development and introduction of digital television broadcasting system DVB-T, according to the Azerbaijan Business Centre.
The programme envisages improvement of TV and radio broadcasting in the country and the transition to digital broadcasting. Switching to digital broadcasting, while maintaining the analogue one, will be realised in two stages:
The first stage (2011-12) includes ensuring broadcasting of at least one open package (8-12 channels) in Baku, Ganja, Nakhchivan and the border areas of the country, and as a result digital broadcasting is expected to cover 60-70% of the population.
The second stage (2013) includes installation of digital transmitters to broadcast two, three or more packages (each of 8-12 channels), which include, along with state, public, private and regional channels the ones of interest for the population.
Today, around 30 state-run, public, private and foreign TV and radio companies are broadcasting in Azerbaijan. Coverage area in the country by the end of 2010 was as follows: one channels – 99.9%; two channels – 99.4%; three channels – 96%; four channels – 90%. There are 14 nationwide (state-governed and private), 14 regional (private) terrestrial and satellite television, 13 nationwide (private) FM-radio channels.
In addition, there are currently three digital terrestrial and cable networks in Baku that broadcast about 100 channels as a pay-TV service.
Nine national TV channels – AzTV, ITV, Lider, Space, Xazar, ANS, ATV, Idman Azerbaycan and ATV INT – broadcast terrestrially and via satellite.
About 310 private and state-run (MCIT’s company Teleradio) stations of various capacities are broadcasting TV and radio programmes in the country.