Entertainment: Focus Shifts To Germany Now

New Delhi, Nov 9: | Updated: Nov 10 2003, 05:30am hrs
Two months after signing a co-production memorandum of understanding with Italy, India is exploring entertainment sector deals with Germany. Significantly, this is for the first time that formal one-on-one talks have been initiated with Germany in the area of entertainment, even as government-to-government dialogue with other major destinations, including the US (Hollywood), France, and Britain began a couple of years ago.

While information and broadcasting minister Ravi Shankar Prasad returned from Venice in September with an MoU, and promised of a mega deal by end of the year, his three-day Berlin trip was more of a handshake visit, as a senior government official described it. Mr Prasad, who led a delegation from the private sector along with Ficci officials, returned on Sunday.

Even as Mr Prasad is understood to have played the role of a facilitator for private companies, India is willing to enter into a co-production treaty with Germany, like in the case of Italy.

But international deals take a long time to come, Canada being a case in point. Despite several rounds of talks over the years, an entertainment sector treaty is yet to be signed with Canada.

The biggies with whom meetings were held during the Berlin trip include German media giant Bertelsmann AG considered the fourth largest media group in the world. The 10-member Indian delegation from animation, film and exhibition sectors met with corporates as well as government officials.