Why are a foreign language package's programs only in SD (Standard Definition)?

This is partly a programming and partly a technical question; not sure which is the better category:

We have a 3-channel foreign language package, and have had it for years. It has always been displayed in SD (4:3) format. I don't believe the original programming would still be in SD, especially not recent production, from that source because it is not a technologically delayed country. Why isn't it being fed to Verizon FIOS in HD?

A related issue: We just had a new FIOS box installed. Although it has new features and improvements, the display of this 4:3 SD material is actually not as good as with the previous box. Why would that be?

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