The Arab States Broadcasting Union (ASBU) is one of the oldest pan-Arab institutions, belonging to the League of Arab States system. It is a professional organization, established in February 1969 in Khartoum, with the objective of "strengthening ties and promoting cooperation among broadcasters in the Arab States for better production and content development."
ASBU provides important services to member broadcasters and to others, such as engineering and consulting services, radio and television exchange of news, programming and sports, as well as radio and TV training. It also strives to acquire broadcasting rights at preferential rates for a number of competitions and sports events to the benefit of its members, as well as to ensure the appropriate broadcasting coverage of such events.
ASBU membership includes the following:
This category includes all Arab, government-owned radio and TV corporations.
includes corporations broadcasting, fully or partly, in Arabic from within the Arab countries or from the outside, owned and managed by Arab funds, either governmental, joint or private, abide by the Arab Charter of Information, in addition to being accepted by 3/4 of the General Assembly members.
other radio and television corporations, if approved by 3/4 of the General Assembly active members. This category includes worldwide corporations, such as CFI - France, PTV - Pakistan, RAI - Italy and RTVE – Spain to name a few.
Internationally, ASBU enjoys a unique place among regional and international unions with which it maintains strong professional relations. ASBU is a very active member of the World Broadcasting Union (WBU).
On the bilateral level, ASBU nurtures strong relations with organizations that share the same goals, including ITU, UNSECO and many other entities in the European region and AIBD in the Asian region .
As for cooperation with EBU, the longstanding relationship covers in particular the exchange of news, sporting events and training. EuromedNews is a project initiated by ASBU, EBU and COPEAM in partnership with the European Commission, allowing the coverage and broadcasting of current Euro-Mediterranean affairs by the southern broadcasters in accordance with their editorial freedom. Inter-Rives, the first Euro-Arab co-production, has already resulted in 32 episodes on "contemporary art", "women" and "emigration". The newborn of such an audiovisual cooperation is called "Maarifa" (knowledge) and has just been initiated. ASBU joins France Televisions and CFI in this innovative venture to support development of interactive educational projects. It is open to ASBU members among public and private television organizations.
In early 2009, ASBU has officially launched its Multimedia Exchange Network Over Satellite MENOS. As a first of its kind, the MENOS network enables new business models and creates enormous opportunities for the ASBU members as well as the Arab region potential users. The MENOS uses an IP, 2-way networking system designed to provide broadcasters with the fastest and most cost-effective techniques to perform the media exchange, as well as to a complete range of coordination tools and value added services. MENOS has received multiple industry awards, the IBC2009 Innovation Content Delivery and Judges’ Award, as well as 2010 Digital Studios most innovative project of 2010.