Zimbabwe - Media

The Ministry of Information, Posts and Telecommunications provides telephone, telegraph, and postal services. In 1997, there were 212,000 main telephone lines. In 2001 there were an additional 111,000 cellular phones in use.

Radio Zimbabwe broadcasts over 2 AM and 3 FM channels and government-produced television programs are broadcast from Harare and Bulawayo. In total there were 7 AM and 20 FM radio stations in 1998. In 1997, there were 16 television stations. In 2000 there were 362 radios and 30 television sets for every 1,000 people. About six Internet service providers served 30,000 subscribers in 1999.

There are a number of independent and government-owned newspapers in the country. The Herald (2002 circulation, 122,166) and the Chronicle (74,032) are owned by the Mass Media Trust (MMT), a holding company affiliated with the ZANU-PF. Though circulation figures were not available at this printing, The Daily News , an independent publication, is reported to have the largest circulation in the country. Major independent weeklies include The Financial Gazette , The Independent , and The Standard .

The constitution provides for free expression, but allows for legal limitations in the name of defense, public safety, public order, state economic interest, public morality, and public health. There is said to be a high degree of self-censorship employed by the media, though an increasingly independent press is sometimes critical of the government.

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