Oh, Canada: Radio Canada International to end shortwave broadcasts, Sackville to be closed

This is another sad day for international broadcasting.

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) has announced sweeping cuts that will eliminate 650 jobs over the course of 3 years. In a strategic plan called, Same Strategy, Different Path, they specifically outline their cuts of shortwave and satellite transmissions which will also mean the closure of their noted Sackville, New Brunswick transmitter site:

(Source: CBC-Transforming Radio Canada International)

In line with plans to modernize the public broadcaster, as outlined in Strategy 2015Radio Canada International (RCI) will undergo a transformation that amounts to phasing out its shortwave and satellite services so it can focus on webcasting. This will account for almost $10 million in annual savings for CBC/Radio-Canada by 2013-14. RCI’s transformation is consistent with currently shifting media consumption behaviours, as well as strategies adopted by other public broadcasters.

“From now on RCI will provide multilingual service broadcasting in English, French, Spanish, Arabic, and Mandarin that strives to help audiences discover and especially understand democratic and cultural life and values in Canada,” says Hubert T. Lacroix, President and CEO.

As well, RCI will provide national and international audiences with online content in five languages (French, English, Spanish, Arabic, and Mandarin) instead of seven. The Russian and Brazilian sections of RCI will be shut down. This allows us to concentrate our efforts on what are among Canada’s largest communities of diverse origins. Following this decision, CBC/Radio-Canada will be closing its shortwave transmission site in Sackville, New Brunswick.

What this will mean

  • End of satellite and shortwave transmission
  • End of the production of RCI news broadcasts
  • Shutdown of Brazilian and Russian sections of RCI
  • Almost $10 million in annual savings for CBC/Radio-Canada by 2013-14

What it won’t mean

  • Shutdown of RCI


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13 thoughts on “Oh, Canada: Radio Canada International to end shortwave broadcasts, Sackville to be closed

  1. Kleber R Santoro

    I’m mourning the “death” of its transmissions RCI, and so much since I listen from South America. Shortwave will be missed in some years from now. Unfortunatelly, shortwave radios will be an electronic museum part, like old TVs. And in the history course, one day the plasma and 3D TV will be so old too. Thanks for that great and old days, when we can hear about Canadian “way of life”, with awesome style.

  2. Ralph Lonn

    With sadnes i`ve just heard the annonsment that CBC will shut down their shorwave transmisssion
    Well,their freq.will soon be overtaking by CR cause they are soon spread all over the shortwave
    Lucky iàm although to have my ham radio licens to run hams in canada on shortwave
    Thanks to all the staff för all those years for the enjoy of listening to you
    73 as we say as radiohams an god luck to you all out there (have to check for the last tranmission)
    Reagards/Ralph Lonn in Sweden

  3. Kf4ukb

    I am in the market for a new shortwave radio, but I am beginning to wonder of it is even worth it. Might just have to buy an Internet radio. Until now I wouldn’t say that shortwave is dying, but it sure seems to be.

  4. Thomas Post author

    Yes, unfortunately, it sounds like the Sackville site will be shut down. I would not be surprised if CRI steps up to purchase it. They are fairly heavy users of the facility and are expanding if anything.

  5. Neil Goldstein

    I’m assuming that this would mean the end of CBC North transmissions on 9625 Khz too. I’m pretty sure that they still broadcast from Sackville. I’m having flashbacks today back to the seventies and all of the RCI and CBC programming I listened to. RCI will be missed on Shortwave. I still put 9625 on sometimes on the weekend.


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