Pacific Beat By Bill Bainbridge, Catherine Graue and Christina Zhou
Updated about 4 hours ago
A Chinese station has taken over some of the shortwave radio frequencies once used by the ABC in the Pacific region, following the broadcaster's decision to end shortwave services.
The ABC chose to end shortwave radio broadcasts in early 2017
China's state-owned broadcaster now uses Radio Australia's old frequencies
Australia's overseas broadcasting in the Asia Pacific is being reviewed
Radio Australia switched off its shortwave transmissions to remote parts of northern Australia and across the Pacific in January 2017.
The ABC insisted at the time the shortwave technology was out of date and it would save $1.9 million by cutting the service, which it said would be reinvested in expanding content and services.
The decision was met by an outcry from affected listeners, and there has been continued agitation to bring the service back.
The Australian newspaper has reported Radio Australia's former shortwave frequencies are now being used by China Radio International, the country's state-owned overseas broadcaster.
Shortwave evades dictators and warns of disasters
The ABC's decision to end Radio Australia's shortwave service has raised questions about who will fill the void.
Claire Moore, Labor's spokeswoman for international development and the Pacific, said she was not surprised Chinese services snapped up Australia's old frequencies.
"People in the Pacific were telling us that shortwave was a tried and true mechanism in their parts of the world, they relied on it and they knew about it," Ms Moore said.
"It was always an issue to see if shortwave was available, if it was being used and we weren't using it, that other players would come into the space."