NHK World celebrates 80 years of radio service

(Source: NHK Radio Japan via Rich Cuff)

Radio service for overseas marks 80 years.

A ceremony has been held to mark 80 years since the start of radio service at Japan’s only station broadcasting programs overseas on shortwave bands.

The KDDI Yamata Transmitting Station in Koga City in Ibaraki Prefecture, north of Tokyo, is used by NHK World Radio Japan.

About 50 officials from NHK, KDDI and other entities took part in the ceremony on Wednesday.

The chief of the communications ministry’s Kanto Bureau of Telecommunications, Tsubaki Yasufumi, said remotely at the event that he honors the station’s 80 years of stable operations. He also said he hopes for continued efforts so that programs from Japan can be broadcast overseas.

Terada Kenji of the NHK Engineering Administration Department said shortwave broadcasting served as a lifeline on many occasions such as the 2014 coup in Thailand. He said he wants to express gratitude to all the people involved in shortwave broadcasting.

After the ceremony, the head of the station, Saito Toshimitsu, said it plays an important role in providing information from Japan. He added that he will keep working hard so that the station will be passed down to younger generations.

Click here to read at NHK World.

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8 thoughts on “NHK World celebrates 80 years of radio service

  1. Adam

    In 2002 or so I was interviewed via phone by NHK Tokyo regarding the Ichiro Suzuki trade to the Seattle Mariners.

    Unfortunately I missed the broadcast but it was fun!

  2. Michael Meyer

    Until last year, I’ve been a very regular listener of NHK’s Europe broadcast in the morning hours on my days off work. Unfortunately, they changed hours to 06:30 local time in the morning, which is just to early! They have cancelled the Europe frequencies, but are audible on the African frequencies in stead.

    Also the programs have changed due to the pandemic. News are now a noisy and high speed version from the domestic broadcaster, and the feature programs are mainly re-broadcasts. And I do miss Saturday program “Reading Japan”!

    So I’m still listening, but only a few times a month.

    1. Tom Servo

      Same here. I used to try to listen to the African-beamed signals here in the US, and it was always hit or miss whether the atmosphere would cooperate, but with them switching the news to just the TV audio with no real context for radio listeners, it’s lost a lot of its appeal. Especially since I can get NHK on both the internet and on my DirecTV service anytime.

      At least their Android app is pretty easy to use and offers all the TV and radio content in one place, so I can still hear the individual segments on demand.

  3. Ko

    It is a loss that the broadcast contents of Radio Japan are not noticed in Japan.
    Japanese broadcasters are shrinking their businesses.
    As a shortwave radio listener living in Japan, I’ve never been so sad.

  4. Tim Marecki

    It is still depressing that Radio Japan has ceased broadcasting to North America. It would be great if WRMI could reach some kind of a relay agreement with them.

    1. Keith Perron

      Why depressing? Many if not most international broadcasters were slow to catch up with how audiences listen and what audiences listen to in terms of content.


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