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Partnerships urged to bolster content industry in Asia

By YANG HAN in Hong Kong | China Daily Global | Updated: 2024-03-13 09:34

People visit the Hong Kong International Film and TV Market in Hong Kong on Tuesday. CALVIN NG/CHINA DAILY

Attendees at a business summit in Hong Kong on Tuesday called for closer regional cooperation to produce better movies and TV programs.

"We cooperate with everybody else in the world," Wilfred Wong Yingwai, chairman of the Hong Kong Film Development Council, told the Asia Content Business Summit.

Wong said this will allow productions to have Hong Kong funding and participation, and to be produced anywhere in the world.

Through this, Hong Kong can open the door to markets all over the world by cooperating with different countries in Asia, he added.

Raistlin Lau Chun, undersecretary for culture, sports and tourism of the Hong Kong Special Administration Region government, said the government is determined to promote the development of cultural and creative industries, as well as the film industry. That is exemplified by the HK$4.3 billion ($549.5 million) that the government is proposing to inject into the CreateSmart Initiative and the Film Development Fund.

"The content sector plays a very vital role in our society," he said.

The content industry encompasses various creative fields including movies, television and multimedia.

For younger generation

The summit "can be the beginning of collaboration of all Asian content industry players so that they can work together and make a better world for the future and the younger generation", said Fred Wang Cheung-yue, chairman of pan-Asian facilities and movie services group Salon Films in Hong Kong.

The summit was held on the sidelines of the Hong Kong International Film and TV Market, or Filmart, bringing together industry leaders from Asia, the United States, and Europe. Officials and industry insiders from Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, South Korea and the Philippines shared the latest government policies for promoting film co-production and distribution, with an emphasis on encouraging cross-cultural collaboration.

Charlene Paling, deputy team leader of Entertainment and Media Group at Western Alliance Bank in the US, said co-production has many benefits, including combining cultural influences, access to top-tier talent, reducing production costs and opportunities to share expertise and experience.

However, Paling said people should also be aware of the challenges in co-production and need to understand their partners well and prepare in advance for different situations.

Alexander Amartei, CEO of Amartei Entertainment and co-producer of film Antara, noted Saudi Arabia's potential for movie industrial cooperation, especially those featuring the Middle East and North Africa.

DJ Clark, multimedia director of China Daily Asia Pacific, gave an introduction to Asia News Network, explaining how the regional alliance of news titles can help stimulate exchanges and co-production among content industries in Asia.

Experts also discussed topics such as opportunities and challenges in cross-cultural co-production financing, the adoption of technologies in co-production and the role of education in cross-cultural co-productions.

Under the theme "The Future and Opportunities of Worldwide Coproductions and Distribution", the summit was co-organized by Salon Media Lab. China Daily supported the event. 

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