As Chinese media becomes more transparent it is helping the West to communicate better with China, says China Daily European Weekly’s Songxin Xie
10th April 2013
China has a growing economic role in the world. It is changing and complex and not always understood. It is too often viewed as opaque and its media associated with censorship and propaganda. However there is much more to China than meets the eye. Even though there is a growing awareness of China’s role on the international stage, there is still very little real understanding about China and the Chinese people.
We understand that increasing globalisation makes the relationship between China and the West one of the most significant relationships in the world today. By providing the latest objective and accurate news from the region, China Daily European Weekly aims to provide a platform for better understanding.
The lack of knowledge and understanding creates an obstacle for European-Chinese investment. One way to open up relations between China and the West, and close the gap in knowledge is via the Chinese media.
Chinese media outlets are looking to become more transparent, encouraging others to learn about Chinese culture. The country’s growth and its integration into the world economy are driving a stronger alignment between China’s business sector and its Western partners. An increasing number of Western companies are now doing business in China. This is an important trend for those in the public relations industry who can ensure their clients take a well-informed passage into the region by targeting those titles that most effectively complement their business.
The lack of knowledge about China has historically created an obstacle for public relations. Without transparent media data, such as distribution figures, there was no reliable way to measure a campaign’s value. However, this is now changing due to an increasingly open media environment and developments in media standards.
As an international news outlet, China Daily European Weekly is dedicated to gradual, but significant, steps towards opening up the media in China. It has now become the first newspaper from China to be awarded ABC certification. By being ABC certified we have delivered distribution figures our readers and advertisers can trust. We regard it as our mission to present a true image of China to the world, and consider this certification an important milestone highlighting our continued commitment to integrate into the European media industry standard.
This certification is our first step towards showing the PR industry that we understand the need for accurate measurement and evaluation. It will allow us to provide PR professionals with an additional platform for their clients to deliver their messages to their audience. By becoming more transparent, China Daily European Weekly aims to open doors and support PR professionals helping their clients to engage with China and its growing business community.
This, we hope, will encourage increased mutual business investment and exchange – essentially opening up China to the wider world. Though the certification is a small step, it does a useful job of bringing together PR professionals with journalists in China through the confidence and objective analysis that it brings.
Even with huge successes in the last two years since launching in Europe, we’ve learnt that just presenting information is not enough. To really engage our readers and the industry we need to be a fully integrated publisher within the international media industry. ABC certification is our first step in showing the UK and Europe that we mean business and that we are here to stay.
Further integration projects are planned for the near and distant future. We hope that continued support from the industry will help us not only grow, but allow us to showcase the benefits of integration to our counterparts in China and integrate the Chinese media industry into the international system as a whole.
Mr Songxin Xie is editor of China Daily European Weekly, China's official international news publication tailored for the European reader