World Media 2006: A window on the world

Figures alone don't tell the whole story of what's happening in the world's most important media markets. This report throws light on how politics and economics come into play.

Welcome to Campaign's World Media 2006 report. In these pages, you will find briefings on the current political and economic state of key media markets, as well as figures and forecasts on how adspend is shared between various media. A mouse-click search, of course, would give those of you who work on international business lots of information on international media markets. ZenithOptimedia, who supplied Campaign with data for this report, brings perspective and a reputation for accuracy.

Alasdair Reid, our main contributor, has taken ZenithOptimedia's data and used it to cast a beady eye over the world's most important media markets. Why do many multinationals continue to plan on the basis that Russia will become a vastly important consumer market when its media infrastructure is proving so slow to evolve? With China now officially the world's fastest-growing economy, will its energy and industry bring further political liberalisation and greater media freedoms? How has a small television station from a small state - the Qatar-based Al-Jazeera - emerged as something of an information power broker in media terms?

Introducing the report, ZenithOptimedia's Jonathan Barnard examines the threats to advertising; ad-avoidance technologies, satellite radio, falling newspaper readership and so on. These threats, however marginal in some markets, need to be taken seriously and are stimulating advertisers and agencies to come up with more creative ways to reach their audiences. A cheering undercurrent to the threats is that world adspend is currently growing at about its historical average rate, and is growing in all media.

Finally, for those of you who value media trivia (who doesn't?), we also fill you in on the reigning media gurus in each market covered and what you should never, ever say when fresh off the plane in Beijing or Boston.

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