Palau | Freedom House

Freedom of the Press

Palau

Palau

Freedom of the Press 2008

2008 Scores

Press Status

Free

Press Freedom Score
(0 = best, 100 = worst)

14

Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)

5

Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)

8

Palau has a small but vibrant media environment, and the constitution protects freedom of expression and the press. Censorship is rare, and the press is free to report on a diversity of issues, including official corruption. In November 2006, the Consolidated Boards Act was passed, combining four government entities—including the Palau National Communications Corporation, which controls internet and satellite television transmissions—into one commission. The officials of the new commission are publicly elected rather than appointed by the government, as was previously the case. In 2007, Palauan media executives joined the newly formed Micronesian Media Association to protect free and independent journalism and public access to information. There were no attacks on the press in 2007. Palau has relatively diverse media considering its small population, including three weekly print publications. President Tommy Esang Remengesau Jr. meets with the press every Wednesday on the government radio station, Eco-Paradise. There are also two private and two church-owned radio stations. WWFM, owned by outspoken journalist and senator Alfonso Diaz, airs a weekly program for Filipinos in Palau. The internet is not regulated by the government, but the medium is not yet a significant news source, as it was accessed by only 1 percent of the population in 2007.