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The Media in Bolivia

    The radio is the primary source of news in Bolivia. Bolivia has nearly 500 radio stations, most of them regional. There about 200 privately-owned television stations in Bolivia, but there is limited access to TV in rural areas. Few people can afford televisions, and in many areas of the country television reception is unreliable. Finding Bolivian television news available on the internet is a rising trend, but again limited by access, as well as literacy. Bolivia has eight national newspapers: four of them are based in La Paz, there are three in Santa Cruz, and the last one is in Cochabamba. Newspaper readership is limited, however, by Bolivia's low national literacy rate. For the most part, media in Bolivia is privately-owned.


    Bolivia's constitution protects both freedom of speech and freedom of the press. Bolivian radio stations are not censored by the government. In 2007, Reporters Without Borders, a worldwide organization that works to promote freedom of the press, stated that Bolivia has greater freedom of the press than many of its South American neighbors, but Bolivian reporters rarely address controversial topics.  Many newspapers take anti-government positions in their writing, but they never address the most sensitive subjects, such as corruption or drug trafficking.


    There are some restrictions on Bolivian media, however, such as slander, defamation or insulting public officials. The Penal Code especially protects the president, vice president and ministers, and jail time is required of anyone who violates the Penal Code. Violators are taken before the independent La Paz Press Tribunal.


Major Bolivian News Radio Stations:

Radio Fides

Radio Panamericana

Radio Illimani

Radio Patria Nueva


Major Bolivian Newspapers:

La Prensa

El Diario

La Razon

El Mundo

Los Tiempos

El Deber

Correo del Sur

La Patria

La Palabra

Bolivian Times


Major Bolivian Television News Stations:

Bolivision (Channel 4)

Unitel (Channel 9)

ATB Red Nacional (Channel 9)

Red Uno (Channel 11)

Television Boliviana (Channel 7)

TV Universitaria (Channel 13)

Red P.A.T.

Here are some related tips to help plan your trip to Bolivia: Traveler's Checks in Bolivia, Salar de Uyuni and Southwestern Lakes, Safety, Shopping, Disabled Travelers in Bolivia, Central Highlands Overview, Living in Bolivia, Safety, Safety and Bolivia Internet Access, WiFi and Internet Cafes.

By Amanda Loviza
I am currently studying at la Universidad San Francisco de Quito and interning with V!VA while I am living in Quito. I am from Midlothian, VA, USA,...
10 Dec 2009

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