RNZ is starting a new chapter with a strengthened purpose as Aotearoa’s non-commercial public media organisation. Our vision is to provide outstanding public media that matters.
RNZ’s Chief Executive and Editor in Chief Paul Thompson says the Charter will provide the organisation’s North Star.
“As Aotearoa’s public broadcaster we are focused on delivering our Charter more effectively and building public trust with high quality news, information and entertainment.
“We will soon receive increased baseline funding that will enable us to strengthen current services while developing new audience experiences for New Zealanders.
“We are also acutely aware of the challenges facing the entire media system and we want to help support a healthy sector through collaboration and innovation. The new RNZ Asia service is a good example of how we will contribute, as is the Local Democracy Reporter service that we facilitate to support regional news coverage.”
The funding increase includes significant support for RNZ’s core public media services, new projects and $1.7m for AM transmission.
The importance of a resilient AM network across Aotearoa was underlined following the impact of Cyclone Gabrielle, with AM radio the only news source for many in the immediate aftermath. Ensuring RNZ can keep people reliably informed during and immediately after a crisis remains a priority.
“The New Zealand news agenda in 2023 has been dominated by adverse weather events. We provide a trusted information lifeline that is becoming increasingly important,” Thompson says.
In addition to the team of journalists on the ground on the East Coast immediately after Cyclone Gabrielle, RNZ journalists Kate Green and Lauren Crimp have been seconded to Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti for a year to provide comprehensive coverage of the cyclone recovery and other key events in the region.
RNZ has once again been named the most trusted media organisation in Aotearoa in the AUT research centre for Journalism, Media and Democracy Trust in News in Aotearoa New Zealand report (first equal with TVNZ and Otago Daily Times). Recent digital results have reinforced the fact that New Zealanders continue to turn to RNZ for trusted news and information in a crisis, with significant spikes in radio streaming and website traffic around major news events.
Planning is underway for comprehensive coverage of the General Election across RNZ’s radio and digital platforms, utilising RNZ’s talented journalists, presenters and producers and external experts to provide election news and stories relevant to all New Zealanders.
As RNZ looks to the future, work is ongoing with the Board and kaimahi to prioritise areas for investment. The Strategy, Statement of Intent and Statement of Performance Expectations for the new financial year beginning 1st of July are currently being finalised. Once confirmed, these documents will be published on rnz.co.nz.