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06/11/2000

BBC PLANS TO IMPROVE BUSINESS COVERAGE

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BBC Director-General Greg Dyke has revealed plans to improve business coverage across all sectors of the BBC.
The new strategy, unveiled at the annual conference of the Confederation of British Industry in Birmingham, will see the appointment of the first business editor in the BBC along with radical changes to their coverage and overall approach to business reporting and programmes.
Jeff Randall, who has been named as the BBC’s first Business Editor, will spearhead a new drive to strengthen business coverage. Randall will take up his new role in March when his current contract as Editor of 'Sunday Business' ends.
Dyke said: “I am confident that Jeff will make a significant difference to our output and one of the things that I want Jeff and his team to capture is the extent to which a great deal of ideology that surrounded the very word ‘business’ is no longer relevant in the first decade of the 21st Century.”
Dyke said that public attitudes to business had changed in recent years and that these needed to be better reflected in the BBC’s output.
The BBC are to introduce the first ever specialist business reporter to 'Newsnight' and develop an evening business programme on BBC News 24 expanding at least one of the daytime slots on the 24-hour television news channel.
As a trial, BBC Two’s ‘Working Lunch’ is to be doubled in length taking the programme to one hour. Two new brands, BBC Business and BBC Money will be created, and a daily early morning business programme for television will also be developed.
Speaking at the conference Dyke said: “Too much of Britain’s main stream news and current affairs programming has ignored or failed to understand the real business agenda.”
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