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China's Opening-up of TV/Film Industry Unchanged
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Claims that the Chinese government is back-pedaling on its policy of allowing foreign investment in its broadcasting, film and TV industries have been rejected by a senior Chinese TV and film administration official. The policy wasn't going to be changed, said the official. 

"China will stick to the opening-up and reform policy in the broadcasting, film and TV industry," said Zhu Hong, general office director of the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television.

In Beijing addressing a broadcast, film and TV development forum Zhu said there had been claims saying that China's policy in this respect had changed.

"This view distorted the facts and was wrong," said Zhu, noting that the policy remained unchanged and wouldn't change in the future.

In 2004 the administration and the Ministry of Commerce jointly issued two regulations on foreign investment in the film and TV industry. This permitted foreign investors to hold no more than 49 percent of film and TV production joint ventures.

China opened up 921 cultural projects covering such fields as film and television with a total value of about 70 billion yuan (US$8.95 billion) in May in anticipation of attracting investment from home and abroad.

And China has eased restrictions on access to the mainland market for Hong Kong's film and television industry, according to a senior official with the administration.

"Quota restrictions on the number of Hong Kong films in the mainland market have been largely lifted," said Zhao Shi, deputy director of the administration.

"China's broadcasting, film and TV industry is experiencing a deep reform, which involves unprecedented areas and far-reaching effects," Zhao said. "The reform also provides strategic opportunities for China's broadcasting, film and TV industry." 

(Xinhua News Agency December 14, 2006)

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