New President’s vision for the union: Prof. Mehmet Zahid Sobaci at the helm of ABU
The Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU), during the 60th General Assembly in Seoul elected Prof. Mehmet Zahid Sobacı, the Director-General of Türkiye’s TRT (Turkish Radio and Television Corporation), as its President. This significant milestone coincides with the centenary of the Republic of Türkiye, marking a new era in international broadcasting leadership.
“My election as the President of ABU is significant for Türkiye’s goal of becoming a leading country in all fields,” expressed Sobacı, underlining the synchronicity of his appointment with the 100th anniversary of the Republic. His leadership comes at a time when the ABU, the world’s largest broadcasting union, reaches approximately 3.5 billion viewers, encompassing 246 members from 65 countries.
Sobacı’s vision for Türkiye and ABU is ambitious and multifaceted, spanning areas such as domestic politics, foreign policy, energy, environment, economy, industry, education, and technology. “This period signifies Türkiye’s ambitious goals, and its determination to achieve them. Therefore, we can consider the ABU presidency as a step and contribution towards achieving the objectives Türkiye has set in the international media arena,” he stated.
Under Sobacı’s stewardship, TRT has evolved into a global broadcasting institution, with channels like TRT World and TRT Arabi and several digital news platforms. “We have transformed into a broadcasting institution that tells the world about the world,” Sobacı noted, emphasising their commitment to equitable reporting and being the voice of the world’s conscience, especially in the wake of events like the recent massacre in Palestine.
The 61st ABU general assembly meeting, set to take place in Istanbul in October 2024, will be hosted under Sobacı’s tenure, promising to usher in a new chapter of collaborative and innovative broadcasting.
Prof. Sobacı, a distinguished academic and media professional, holds degrees in Public Administration and Political Science from Uludağ University, with a career encompassing significant contributions in the fields of public administration reform, public policy, and the interplay of social media and politics. His acclaimed works and leadership roles in various prestigious institutions have established him as a thought leader in his field.
As TRT’s Director-General since 2021, Sobacı has pioneered a broadcasting approach centred around in-depth, innovative, and comprehensive content, with a keen focus on human stories. His efforts have led to the launch of Türkiye’s International Digital Platform “tabii” and the introduction of TRT Français, TRT Balkan, and TRT Afrika, further expanding TRT’s international reach. This period also saw TRT receiving the International Emmy Award, a testament to its global impact.
With his extensive experience, innovative vision, and commitment to impactful broadcasting, Prof. Mehmet Zahid Sobacı is poised to steer the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union towards a new horizon of media excellence and global influence.
(Photos: Courtesy of @zahidsobaci on X)