x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Veteran British TV news anchor is relocating from London to Abu Dhabi

Becky Anderson is due to join the American broadcaster CNN’s Middle East office and will host her show 'Connect the World with Becky Anderson' from the capital.

CNN's Becky Anderson.
CNN's Becky Anderson.

Becky Anderson to front CNN news show from Abu Dhabi

ABU DHABI // A veteran British television news anchor is relocating from London to Abu Dhabi – a move she describes as a “no-brainer” personally and professionally.

Becky Anderson, 46, is due to join the US broadcaster CNN’s Middle East office and will host Connect the World with Becky Anderson from the capital.

“The UAE has never had more resonance and influence on the geopolitical space,” Anderson said.

“In many ways, locating Connect the World to the UAE is the perfect expression of the show’s philosophy.

“Being based in Abu Dhabi will allow us to travel around the region and get more on-the-ground experience. For our viewers, it will increase the depth and breadth of understanding of the region.

“You should expect to see the issues of the day, the international news of the day and with a clear focus on Middle East stories that are resonating.”

The programme will be broadcast from the UAE from April 6 every Sunday to Thursday at 7pm.

Anderson has been working for CNN since May 1999 and has covered some of the biggest stories in the past 16 years through her coverage of politics and global affairs.

She has interviewed many international leaders and statesmen, including Desmond Tutu, Kofi Annan, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Afghan president Hamid Karzai, South African president Jacob Zuma and the UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon.

The UAE is geographically, culturally and economically at the centre of so many important stories, said Anderson.

“As well as being an exceptionally dynamic place in itself, it is also an ideal location from which to access the rest of the Middle East and beyond,” she said.

“The UAE is producing increasingly exciting and important stories. Then you have arts, culture, entertainment, sports, business stories, which suit me as a sort of all-round news professional.”

The presenter said she was looking forward to moving to Abu Dhabi for personal reasons, as well as professionally. The thing that sticks out the most is the can-do, will-do attitude,” she said. “Watching the genesis of the UAE is increasingly exciting. There is a real sense of excitement.

“Dubai has matured into this really quite resonant city and Abu Dhabi, with the Louvre and Guggenheim, for me, it really becoming a cultural destination.”

Anderson previously worked with ITN in the UK, CNBC Europe and Bloomberg.

Mike McCarthy, senior vice president of programming at CNN International, said: “Connect the World will remain focused on international news, but we want to take advantage of its new location to explore the stories that matter in the Middle East.”

ksinclair@thenational.ae