Las Palmas, 18 September 2006 - From its Las Palmas offices, afrol News this month has launched its full-fledged French language service to serve the needs of its African francophone partner media. afrol News thus finally publishes in Africa's three major languages (English, French and Portuguese) and in Spanish.
After several months of test services in French language, distributing news copy from our partner media, afrol News this week has started translating a part of its own news production into French language. The press agency's new service is already received by around 25 independent newspapers in West and Central Africa, which so far had received English copy.
The French language service is mainly composed out of afrol News' own translated news coverage, translated articles from English and Portuguese spoken independent media, edited press releases, articles by the UN news agencies IRIN and PlusNews (which signed an agreement for distribution with afrol News earlier this year) and independent francophone media participating in our network.
Contributors among independent newspapers so far have included Le Lynx and La Lance from Guinea (Conakry), Le Calame and L'Eveil Hebdo from Mauritania and Quotidien Mutations from Cameroon. A long list of West, Central and North African francophone have signalled their desire to take part in the network, also by contributing with their news copy. With the launch of our French services, many of those now will enter the network actively.
The French newswire will - at least for the moment - not be open to the public, in line with the Portuguese services. News copy is only received through a special subscription, given freely to francophone African independent media. Other subscribers, contacting afrol News, will be charged a small fee, depending on their use of the news copy.
Operations in French language will for now be based in afrol News' Las Palmas (Canary Islands, Spain) subsidiary, where a translator is in charge of most of the production. This also marks the greater importance of our Las Palmas offices, which may be upgraded to the news agency's head offices during 2007, depending on the revenue basis.
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