Anchors step down from major news program

By Wang Xiaodong ( China Daily ) Updated: 2014-05-29 03:12:56

Anchors step down from major news program Anchors step down from major news program
Zhang Hongmin, CCTV news anchor  Li Ruiying, CCTV news anchorwoman 

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Two news anchors for one of China's most influential TV news programs will retire from their positions, State broadcaster China Central Television confirmed on Wednesday, with the move expected to better cater to younger audiences.

Li Ruiying, 52, said that she and Zhang Hongmin, 53, will retire from Xinwen Lianbo and move to another department within the broadcaster to train new anchors, according to a CCTV statement posted on the Sina Weibo micro-blogging service on Wednesday.

A staff member from CCTV's broadcasting department also confirmed the news on Wednesday with China Daily.

Xinwen Lianbo has been one of CCTV's most important news programs since it first aired in 1978. The program, believed to have more viewers than any other TV program in China, is broadcast live every day from 7 to 7:30 pm and covers domestic and international news.

"We (Zhang and I) are grateful for China Central Television for cultivating us, and we appreciate the support from our audiences," Li said in a text message posted online. "We think the younger news anchors have grown up and it's time for us to continue to work backstage as their trainers and mentors," she said.

Wang Sixin, a professor at Communication University of China, said he was "rather surprised" to hear that Li and Zhang will retire from their posts.

Wang said they have been major news anchors at CCTV for a very long time and are admired by their audiences.

"Their faces and voices have become deeply rooted in the minds of the viewers, and their sudden exit may be upsetting to some people."

But their move will also bring more opportunities for fresh talent at CCTV to stand out, he said.

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