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Chinese television dramas popular in Africa

(People's Daily Online)    10:04, January 06, 2015
A poster of "The Beautiful Daughter-in-Law Era". (File photo)

"When a Chinese drama or film is broadcast, Tanzanians will be in front of the TV early in anticipation," says Professor Hamza Mustafa Njozi, Vice Chancellor of the Muslim University of Morogoro. "Programs like 'The Beautiful Daughter-in-Law Era' enjoy great popularity in Tanzania."

According to Njozi, the plots of Chinese dramas are well written and full of human interest, so people of all walks of life all love to watch. Chinese TV dramas and films have become an important way to spread Chinese culture in Tanzania. Chinese drama has opened a window to Tanzanians, which helps them to understand China.

"I like Chinese TV dramas, especially 'Let’s Get Married'. I haven’t missed a single episode. It is very moving," says Philip, a taxi driver in Uganda. In 2014, Chinese media group StarTimes held a "Beijing TV dramas broadcasting season" in Kenya, South Africa, Uganda, Nigeria and other African countries. Philip watched "Let's Get Married" through this channel. Philip said that Ugandans really enjoy Chinese TV drama. Through these programs, they get to know how Chinese people solve family conflicts and social problems.

Since the Swahili-language version of "The Beautiful Daughter-in-Law Era" was broadcast in Tanzania in 2011, many Chinese TV dramas have been broadcast in Tanzania, Kenya, Egypt, Senegal, Zambia and other African countries. These include "Jintailang’s Happy Life", "Beijing Youth", and "Struggle". More and more Africans have developed an interest in China through watching Chinese TV.

Liu Dong, cultural counselor of the Chinese Embassy in Tanzania, says that the five Chinese TV dramas currently broadcast in Tanzania are all very popular, especially the family-themed dramas. Tanzanians also have similar family problems, so they can easily relate to the plotlines.

According to Pang Xinxing, president of StarTimes, the program platform of StarTimes now has 320 channels, broadcasting in eight languages. In 2014 StarTimes started to build a 20,000 square meter African headquarters in Nairobi, representing a total investment of 80 million USD. It is expected to be completed in 2015. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Kong Defang,Bianji)

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