United Nations

Content of and Charges for Radio Broadcasts Transmitted by the Voice of America Gao ID: NSIAD-86-114BR April 30, 1986

In response to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the United Nations (UN) radio programs that Voice of America (VOA) transmits to: (1) assess instances of favorable and unfavorable treatment of the United States and U.S. policy interests in the programs; and (2) clarify the leasing arrangement between UN and VOA.

GAO found that: (1) the past method of computing charges for VOA broadcast services resulted in a U.S. subsidy of the broadcasts; (2) in March 1986, after VOA announced a rate increase to cover the full cost of the transmissions, UN suspended its broadcasts because of budgetary constraints; (3) because UN broadcasts are not monitored, U.S. officials do not know the extent to which these programs support or oppose U.S. policy interests; and (4) in the program tapes that it reviewed, there were instances of both favorable and unfavorable treatment of U.S. policy positions. GAO noted that UN will consider resuming the broadcasts in the fall when the General Assembly is in session.


Our recommendations from this work are listed below with a Contact for more information. Status will change from "In process" to "Open," "Closed - implemented," or "Closed - not implemented" based on our follow up work.

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