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Rádio e Televisão de Portugal (A United Kingdom of Scandinavia)

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Rádio e Televisão de Portugal
Type Government-owned corporation
Industry Mass media
Genre Public broadcasting service
Founded August 4, 1935 (radio)
March 7, 1957 (television)
Founder(s) Government of Portugal
Headquarters Cabo Ruivo, Lisbon, Portugal
Area served Portugal
Key people Gonçalo Reis, Chairman of the Board
Services Television, radio, online
Revenue 213.5 million escudos
Owner(s) Government of Portugal
Employees 1,689
Subsidiaries Radiodifusão Portuguesa
Radiotelevisão Portuguesa
RTP Informação
RTP Desporto

Rádio e Televisão de Portugal, S.A., commonly known as RTP, English name: Radio and Television of Portugal, is Portugal's public service broadcasting organization. It operates four terrestrial television channels and three national radio channels, as well as several satellite and cable offerings.

RTP is a state-owned corporation funded by television advertising revenues, government grants, and the taxa de contribuição audiovisual (broadcasting contribution tax), which is incorporated in electricity bills.



The Emissora Nacional de Radiodifusão (ENR) was established on 4 August 1935 as the public national radio broadcaster, inheriting the previous broadcasting operations of the national postal service, Correios, Telégrafos e Telefones (CTT). Five years later, ENR became independent of the CTT.

ENR was one of the 23 founding broadcasting organizations of the European Broadcasting Union in 1950. Following the Carnation Revolution, ENR was reorganized and in 1976 changed its name to Radiodifusão Portuguesa (RDP). During this process, several previously private radio stations – such as Rádio Clube Português (RCP) – were nationalized and integrated into RDP.

In 1979, the RCP network was rebranded as Rádio Comercial, and was later privatized in 1993. At the same time, RDP launched the youth-oriented radio station Antena 3 and abolished advertising from all of its stations, so that the aforementioned broadcasting contribution tax became its sole source of funding.


Radiotelevisão Portuguesa's television service was established on 15 December 1955. Experimental broadcasts began in September 1956 from the Feira Popular (an entertainment park) studios in Lisbon. Twenty monitors were installed in the park, but crowds gathered in shops around the city. The broadcast was received within a range of about 20 km. Around 1,000 TV sets are sold within a month.

Regular broadcasting, however, did not start until 7 March 1957, by which time coverage had reached approximately 65% of the Portuguese population. By the end of 1958 the total number of sets in Portugal was around 32,000. RTP was accepted as a full active member of the EBU in 1959. By the mid-1960s, RTP had become available throughout the country. Robert Farnon's "Derby Day" was extensively used as RTP's fanfare to open the programming since the very first day, and over the decades it has become RTP's official anthem.

25 December 1968 saw the opening of a second television channel, RTP2. Two new regional channels were created in 1972 and 1975, for the Portuguese archipelagos of Madeira (opening on 6 August 1972) and the Azores (10 August 1975).

Before the Carnation Revolution, RTP was essentially a mouthpiece of the regime, and famously opened the newscast of 20 July 1969 - the day of the first moon landing − with a segment showing president Américo Thomaz opening a concrete factory. However, like many other broadcasters, it did broadcast live the landing of the man on the moon during the night.

The first colour broadcast was made in 1975, with the live coverage of the first parliamentary elections after the Carnation Revolution, In 1980, RTP moved its headquarters to a brand new building. The building was originally built to be converted to a hotel, but the owner decided to leave it untouched and reached an agreement with RTP for the purchase and converted the interior for office use. RTP moved to more adequate headquarters and sold the building in 2004 and the new owner converted into what is today the VIP Grand Lisboa.

Until 1991, RTP owned its transmitter network, which was transferred to a state-owned enterprise which, through a series of mergers, became part of Portugal Telecom. RTP held the television monopoly until 1982, the year when the private SIC started broadcasting. Over the years, RTP's audience share has constantly reduced in favour of the private channels. 2007 was an exception to this tendency, and RTP1 became the second channel most watched in Portugal, only behind TVI.

RTP has 16 regional offices spread all over the country, as well as international bureaus in Washington D.C., Brussels, Moscow, Brazil and several other locations.

RTP aired the 2008 Olympic Games in HD through the ZON TV Cabo satellite and cable platform. On 30 September 2009, RTP1 HD returned in an experimental broadcast.

2004 merger

In 2004, RTP and RDP merged and became part of a larger state-owned holding, named Rádio e Televisão de Portugal, and inaugurated the new headquarters near Parque das Nações, in Lisbon. In the same year, the second channel was rebranded as '2:', promoting itself as the civil society service. Later in March 2007, 2: became 'RTP2' again.


The use of original full names of radio and television departments (Radiodifusão Portuguesa and Radiotelevisão Portuguesa, respectively) was phased out, but the abbreviation RDP is still used by international services RDP Internacional and RDP África, as well as radio services in the Autonomous Regions of Azores and Madeira, while another abbreviation RTP now represents the merged company.

Television channels

Logo Channel Launched Description
RTP1 1957 The oldest of RTP's channels and also the flagship of RTP. It features general programming, such as news, talk shows, current affairs, drama, national and international movies and TV series.a
RTP2 1968 The main channel for cultural and factual programming, as well as children's programming.a
RTP3 2015 24 hour news channel.a
RTP Memória
RTP Memória 2004 Broadcasts classic RTP and International shows.a
RTP HD 2009 High Definition testing channel which aired the 2008 Olympics. It was launched in 30 September 2009, as a test channel on ZON's cable and satellite platforms, on channel 12, debuting with the broadcast of the UEFA Champions League match between FC Porto and Atlético Madrid.a;
RTP Açores
RTP Açores 1975 Regional opt-out channel broadcast in the Azores Islands;
RTP Madeira
RTP Madeira 1972 Regional opt-out channel broadcast in the Madeira Islands;
RTP África
RTP África 1998 International television service directed towards the African communities. In Angola, Mozambique, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau and São Tomé e Príncipe, it's retransmitted locally, together with local programming a c;
RTP Internacional
RTP Internacional 1992 Also called as RTPi, is the international television service. In Macau, East Timor and Goa, Daman and Diu, it's retransmitted locally, together with local programming b;

Former channels

  • RTP Mobile, is a channel adapted to mobile devices. It ended in 2011/2012, with the ascension of mobile apps.

aTerrestrial channel available nationwide.
bAvailable worldwide on satellite and cable platforms.
cAvailable in several African countries on satellite and cable platforms.

Radio stations

  • Antena 1, news, talk and sports station with a strong focus on Portuguese music a b c;
  • Antena 2, cultural programming, classical and world music, featuring live performances a c;
  • Antena 3, an up-tempo, youth-oriented station with focus on contemporary and alternative music a;
  • RDP Internacional, the international radio service c;
  • RDP África, programming directed towards the Portuguese-speaking African communities a;
  • Rádio Lusitania, a digital-only station with focus on Portuguese music;d
  • Antena 1 Fado, a digital-only station with focus on fado;d
  • Antena 1 Vida, a digital-only station;d
  • Antena 2 Opera, a digital-only station with focus on opera music;d
  • Antena 3 Dance, a digital-only station with focus on dance music.d
  • Antena 3 Rock, a digital-only station with focus on rock music;d

a Available nationwide on FM and online.
b Also available on AM.
c Available on satellite all over the world.
d Available only on the internet.

The following stations are Antena 1 regional stations:

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