updated 4/17/2006 4:41:47 PM ET 2006-04-17T20:41:47

AOL this week will begin broadcasting news programs supplied by Shanghai Media Group's broadband unit, the companies said Monday.

Shows will be broadcast on AOL's Chinese language Web site and will focus on Chinese social, business, sports and entertainment topics, said Wang Xiaotang, a spokeswoman for SMG Broadband Co.

"AOL aims to broadcast that content to Chinese all over the world," she said. AOL is the Internet unit of Time Warner Inc.

The programs will be available to users of http://aol.com/chinese, which carries news and programming, webcasts of sports events and other Internet services related to China.

The programming, which SMG said will total more than three hours each day, will be provided in partnership with MediaZone, a worldwide provider of online television programming and a partner in China of AOL and Shanghai Media Group.

"By creating this free, language-specific portal, we can better serve the millions of people in the United States who want access to critical features and communications tools, especially the latest news and entertainment video, in Chinese," Norman Koo, an AOL Web strategy executive, said in a statement.

According to AOL's Web site, its Chinese language Web site was developed with ChinaPortal.com, a MediaZone division.

State-owned Shanghai Media Group was formed from the merger of the city's government-run radio and television stations in 2001 and ranks as one of the country's biggest media and entertainment conglomerates.

Its parent company, Shanghai Media & Entertainment Group, also owns film and theater troupes, culture centers and various multimedia and Internet ventures.

The company has been allying itself with major international media groups such as Viacom Inc., Vivendi Universal SA and Discovery Channel.

SMG Broadband Co., wholly owned by Shanghai Media Group, is the only company licensed in China to provide Internet Protocol Television, or IPTV, services in China.

Copyright 2006 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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