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Last Updated: Tuesday, 31 May, 2005, 07:30 GMT 08:30 UK
Sport show is UK's top TV export
World Cup snowboarding parallel slalom competition in South Korea
Gillette World Sport covers events from football to snowboarding
TV show Gillette World Sport was sold to more countries than any other British programme last year, according to a survey of UK TV exports.

Gillette World Sport, which is billed as "the world's most popular show", was seen in 220 countries.

British TV companies made 534m from selling shows abroad in 2004 - up 6% on 2003, TV trade body Pact reported.

Midsomer Murders, Pop Idol shows, Miss World and the Bafta Awards were among the other top exports, Pact said.

Gillette World Sport, which features a round-up of global action from football to snowboarding, has been on air for 20 years.

Midsomer Murders
1. Gillette World Sport - 220 countries
2. Midsomer Murders (above) - 204
3. Pop Idol - 200+
4=. Miss World 2004 - 169 countries
4=. Bafta Film Awards - 169 countries
Source: Pact
It is made by The Television Corporation, which recently poached BBC director of sport Peter Salmon to become its new chief executive.

Midsomer Murders and the Idols are also seen in more than 200 countries, Pact said.

Other popular exports include documentaries like Deep Jungle and Spy, and dramas such as Ultimate Force and Prime Suspect.

Concert specials featuring Britney Spears, Robbie Williams and Beyonce Knowles were also hits around the world, sold to more than 130 countries.

Revenues were boosted by rising global DVD sales, which went up 25% between 2003 and 2004, Pact said

Sales of ready-made shows were up 12% - but revenues from selling format ideas dropped 25%.

The US is the biggest market for British TV, accounting for almost 40% of sales - but that was down 5% compared with 2003.

British TV is loved around the world - these statistics prove that
James Purnell
Culture minister
Australasia, France, Scandinavia, Canada and Eastern Europe all showed big increases.

Pact chief executive John McVay said the industry had succeeded "despite difficult trading conditions in some key markets".

"The sheer range of programmes that consistently sell across the world proves our domestic market really is a one-stop shop for overseas buyers," he said.

Culture minister James Purnell said: "British TV is loved around the world. These statistics prove that.

"From established favourites like Midsomer Murders to alternative comedy such as Green Wing, our television companies continue to strike a chord with a global audience."

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