EU seeks more cooperation with India in making, marketing films

June 11th, 2008 - 11:30 am ICT by IANS  

Brussels, June 11 (IANS) India is among a group of countries with which the European Union (EU) is seeking to to expand cooperation in the film industry, a top EU official has said. The 27-member bloc seeks more co-production, joint training programmes and film market participation with other countries besides the US. India, China, Canada, Australia and Japan are the countries with which the EU wants to expand cooperation, European Commission spokesperson for information society and media Martin Selmayr told a news conference here Tuesday, EuAsiaNews reported.

The market share of EU films in other countries across the world is only between 2-5 percent compared to the 63.6 percent of market share enjoyed by American films, Selmayr said.

He noted that the current film market share of other countries, besides the US, in the EU is 3.3 percent while Indian films have a 0.25 percent marketshare in the EU.

“We are interested in cooperating more with countries where these 3.3. percent come from,” he said.

Selmayr said public consultation has been launched by the European Commission (EC) on a possible Media Mundus programme, following the model of the student exchange programme, Erasmus Mundus, which is an exchange between European universities and universities in other countries.

The Media Mundus programme seeks feedback from stakeholders on the idea of complementing the existing media programme, created in 1991, for the promotion, development and distribution of European films.

An annual budget of around 100 million euros (around $154.62 million) will be allocated for the new international programme.

A public online consultation on the main features and priorities of a possible Media Mundus programme is open until June 15 and a public hearing will be held here June 25.

The Media Mundus programme seeks to strengthen cultural and commercial relations between Europe’s film industry and film-makers of third countries.

Such a programme would facilitate the circulation of European films and films from other countries worldwide.

The European Commission (EC) wants to make sure that European films are successful also in other countries, stressed the spokesman.

In December 2007, the EC, with the support of the EU parliament and the bloc’s culture ministers, launched the preparatory action for an international media programme. For this, the EU has earmarked a budget of 2 million euros in 2008.

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