Dominican Republic - Media

The Dominican Telephone Co. operates the domestic telephone system, and the government controls domestic telegraph service. The larger cities have automatic telephone exchanges, and about 90% of the telephones are on an automatic dial system. In 1997 there were some 709,000 mainline telephones in use, most of which were in the capital. The same year, there were about 131,149 cellular phones in use.

International cable service is provided by All America Cables and RCA. In 1998 there were 120 AM and 56 FM radio stations as well as about 25 television stations, of which the government-owned Radio-Televisión Dominicana is the most important, In 2000 there were 181 radios and 97 television sets for every 1,000 people.

The newspapers of the Dominican Republic are rated by the Inter-American Press Association as among the freest in Latin America. The leading daily is Listín Diario (circulation 88,050 in 2002). Two other papers of importance, also published in the capital, are El Nacional (circulation 45,000), and El Caribe, an independent morning daily, published in Santo Domingo (circulation 32,000). Of the dailies published outside the capital, La Información of Santiago (circulation 15,000) is the best known.

The legally provided freedom of speech and the press are said to be generally supported in practice by the government. Many privately owned radio and TV stations broadcast differing political points of view, as do the many independent newspapers and periodicals. A 1971 law prohibits the broadcast of foreign-language programming.

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