How many countries broadcast their parliamentary/assembly sessions live?

Singapore prides itself as a first-world country with a first-world government. However, when it comes to first world government practices, it seems to fare lesser than those perceived to be of third-world.

To show just how out of place Singapore is in comparison with the rest of the world, we list down the governments that provide live-streaming of its sessions to the public.

Below is a list of countries that have made live parliament sessions available to the citizens via television, radio and web-streaming. (Some unlisted countries might have TV stations that broadcast its sessions but unable to verify because their websites are down.)

  1. Canada
  2. United States of America
  3. Mexico
  4. Argentina
  5. Brazil
  6. Guatemala
  7. Dominican Republic
  8. Venezuela
  9. Colombia
  10. Paraguay
  11. Ecuador (audio)
  12. Guyana
  13. Honduras (TV)
  14. Bolivia (audio)
  15. Chile
  16. Costa Rica
  17. Barbados
  18. Republic of Trinidad and Tobago
  19. United Kingdom
  20. Ireland
  21. France
  22. Italy
  23. Malta
  24. Finland
  25. Germany
  26. Belgium
  27. Hungary
  28. Austria
  29. Greece
  30. Sweden
  31. Switzerland
  32. Iceland
  33. Liechtenstein 
  34. Netherlands
  35. Denmark
  36. Norway
  37. Lithuania
  38. Luxembourg
  39. Spain
  40. Andorra
  41. Portugal
  42. Romania
  43. Bulgaria
  44. Albania
  45. Montenegro
  46. Macedonia
  47. Poland
  48. Estonia
  49. Latvia
  50. Croatia 
  51. Russia
  52. Slovenia
  53. Kyrgyz Republic (audio)
  54. Slovakia 
  55. Czech Republic
  56. Ukraine
  57. Georgia
  58. Armenia
  59. Serbia
  60. Turkey
  61. Moldova
  62. Kazakhstan
  63. Jordon
  64. Israel
  65. Bahrain
  66. South Africa
  67. Bermuda
  68. Gambia
  69. Tunisia
  70. Nigeria
  71. Ghana
  72. Rwanda (audio)
  73. Cabo Verde
  74. Tonga
  75. India
  76. Bangladesh 
  77. Pakistan
  78. Sri Lanka
  79. Nepal
  80. Bhutan (TV)
  81. China
  82. Mongolia
  83. Japan
  84. South Korea
  85. Malaysia
  86. Indonesia
  87. Thailand
  88. Philipines
  89. Taiwan
  90. Hong Kong
  91. New Zealand
  92. Australia
  93. Republic of Vanuatu
  94. Fiji

Given the fact that so many countries made live parliamentary sessions accessible, what is stopping Singapore from doing so?

In defence of its decision not to stream its parliamentary sessions live, Senior Minister of State for Ministry of Communications and Information, Chee Hong Tat said that there is no need for live streaming because there is low demand by the population and that there are less than 10% of the population who watches the live broadcast of the Budget announcement each year.

Taking an example from the list of countries, South Africa’s population is close to 56 million individuals but its live-stream parliamentary videos on its official Youtube channel are watched less than 2,000 times by viewers but yet it continues to make the service available.  So even if we were to just simply look at South Africa, Mr Chee’s defence seems as weak as straw.

If you are interested in signing a petition to call for live streaming in Singapore’s parliament, visit this link.

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