xinhua news agency

At a time when many Western media outlets are contracting, Chinese media outlets are expanding, rapidly. Beijing is pouring billions into the country's state-run media machine, which is churning out new TV networks, radio stations and newspapers aimed at foreign audiences.

For decades Xinhua has been an unavoidable presence in China. It has a monopoly on official news and the regulatory power to complicate life for other media outfits. But as China has grown in wealth and international stature, Beijing has tired of feeling overlooked or maligned by the Western press.

China's state news agency launched an international English language news channel yesterday – the latest step in the government's multibillion-pound soft power push. The authorities hope expanding foreign language media will help promote the country's image and viewpoint, and ultimately challenge the BBC or CNN.

China's official Xinhua news agency launches a global English-language television service today. The new round-the-clock service, dubbed CNC (China Xinhua News Network Corp.) will "present an international vision with a China perspective to global audiences," according to the news agency's president, Li Congjun.

On 1 July 2010 Xinhua, the news agency of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), will launch a global 24-hour English-language television channel called China Network Corp (CNC). Trial broadcasts began on May 1.