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A-PAC logo.png
Launched 20 January 2009; 9 years ago (2009-01-20)
Owned by Foxtel
Picture format 576i (SDTV 16:9)
1080i (HDTV)
Slogan Australia's Public Affairs Network
Country Australia
Language English
Broadcast area Australia
Replaced Sky News Election Channel
Replaced by Sky News Election Channel (linear channel; 1 May 2016-23 January 2017)
Sister channel(s) Sky News Australia
Sky News Business Channel
Sky News Weather Channel
Website a-pac.tv
Foxtel Channel 648
Foxtel Channel 648
Optus TV Channel 648
Streaming media
Available free to all internet users http://www.a-pac.tv/

A-PAC (/ˈpæk/ AY-pak; Australian Public Affairs Channel) is an Australian 24-hour cable and satellite public affairs news channel owned by Foxtel.


Former A-PAC logo

On 8 December 2008 it was announced that an Australian public affairs channel called A-SPAN (an acronym for Australian Subscription Public Affairs Channel) would launch on 20 January 2009. The channel format is modelled on the American public affairs network C-SPAN. The news came after reports the ABC were considering launching a dedicated public affairs digital channel.[1][2] Prior to launch the channel renamed as A-PAC (an acronym for Australian Public Affairs Channel). A-PAC is a not for profit independent channel funded by Austar and Foxtel, and produced by Sky News Australia.[3][4]

The channel officially launched on the morning of 20 January 2009, with the inauguration of United States President Barack Obama airing on its first day, using a feed from U.S. cable channel C-SPAN.[5][4]

Despite originally planned to occur on 26 April 2009, on 17 May 2009 A-PAC began broadcasting in 16:9 widescreen aspect ratio, along with sister channels Sky News Business Channel and Sky News Australia.[6]

On 24 May 2012, Foxtel acquired Austar,[7] which saw Foxtel become the sole stakeholder of A-PAC.

In February 2014, A-PAC had an on-air refresh, as well as launched a revamped website and a new weekly newsletter. In addition, Sky News presenter Helen Dalley was appointed as channel host.[8]


A-PAC content features live broadcasts from Australia's Parliament House in Canberra (including sittings of the House of Representatives, the Senate, parliamentary Committee meetings and political press conferences), the parliaments of New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland as well as sittings of the United States Congress, live broadcasts of speeches from the Australian National Press Club and a program which provides coverage of the New Zealand and British parliaments. Material from the United Nations and the European Parliament is also aired.[5][4][1]


At launch A-PAC was available via satellite and cable television on channel 607; and was later made available by Internet streaming on its website, as well as on free-to-air digital television in Sydney as a trial.[4]

On 15 November 2009, A-PAC's channel location for Foxtel changed from Channel 607 to Channel 648.

From 1 May 2016, the service's linear channel was replaced by Sky News Election Channel, resulting in the service only being available on the Sky News Multiview service and online.[9][10][11] Although the service was originally planned to relaunch as a linear channel on 30 November 2016,[12] this was later postponed,[13] and ultimately the linear channel did not return until 24 January 2017.[14] The relaunch did, however, see A-PAC obtain Sky News Election Channel's HD feed,[15] seeing the channel available in high definition for the first time.


  1. ^ a b "A-SPAN: it's the new 24/7 pollie telly". The Sydney Morning Herald. 8 December 2008. Retrieved 7 April 2017. 
  2. ^ "Rudd hails new A-Span TV network". ABC News. 8 December 2008. Retrieved 7 April 2017. 
  3. ^ Knox, David (15 January 2009). "A-PAC Channel nears". TV Tonight. Retrieved 14 April 2017. 
  4. ^ a b c d Knox, David (20 January 2009). "APAC on the air". TV Tonight. Retrieved 7 April 2017. 
  5. ^ a b Archer, Lincoln (8 December 2008). "A-SPAN, non-stop public affairs channel, launched". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 8 December 2008. [permanent dead link]
  6. ^ "Sky News to broadcast in widescreen". Australian-Media.com.au. 11 April 2009. Archived from the original on 26 January 2016. Retrieved 6 April 2017.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)
  7. ^ Knox, David (24 May 2012). "Foxtel completes Austar merger". TV Tonight. Retrieved 14 April 2017. 
  8. ^ Knox, David (11 February 2014). "Helen Dalley appointed A-PAC channel host". TV Tonight. Retrieved 6 April 2017. 
  9. ^ "Sky News Election Channel: Foxtel and Sky's new destination for politics junkies". Mediaweek. 26 April 2016. Archived from the original on 26 April 2016. Retrieved 26 April 2016. 
  10. ^ "Got Foxtel". Foxtel. Archived from the original on 27 April 2016. Retrieved 27 April 2016. 
  11. ^ "Got Foxtel". Foxtel. Archived from the original on 4 November 2016. Retrieved 4 November 2016. 
  12. ^ "Got Foxtel". Foxtel. Archived from the original on 4 November 2016. Retrieved 4 November 2016. 
  13. ^ Paigeturner (23 November 2016). "SKY NEWS Election channel has been extended until further notice". Foxtel. Retrieved 30 November 2016. 
  14. ^ Paigeturner (18 January 2017). "Key Customer Updates from 2017". Foxtel. Retrieved 19 January 2017. 
  15. ^ @FOXTEL_Help (25 January 2017). "A-PAC is expected to continue to be available in HD on channel 648 :)" (Tweet) – via Twitter. 

External links[edit]