NZ and Korea sign film industry pact
01 Oct 2008
New Zealand and the Republic of Korea have signed a film co-production agreement that will strengthen screen industry partnerships between the two countries.
The agreement was signed by New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark and the Korean Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism You In-chon in a ceremony at Parliament Buildings in Wellington on September 30.
The treaty has been 15 months in development and is seen as a major boost for the film industry in both countries.
''New Zealand and Korea have a strong film-making relationship. The successful New Zealand film 'Black Sheep' was a joint venture with Korean investors, and many significant Korean films have been located here including 'Silmido', 'Old Boy', and 'Laundry Warrior','' Helen Clark said.
Boost for film-makers
Ms Clark said there was a great deal of interest from both countries in the relationship and a number of promising productions were already in development.
''This agreement will provide a further boost for film-makers to advance those projects. I look forward to seeing the results on screen,'' she said.
Co-production agreements enable approved joint film projects to gain official co-production status. This enhances their access to funding and incentives in line with those available for ‘national’ films in each country.
Governments also facilitate, within existing regulations, temporary immigration and importation of equipment. Each agreement is jointly administered by the New Zealand Film Commission and an equivalent organisation in the other country.
The agreement with Korea is limited to productions intended to be shown in cinemas.
Ms Clark said the New Zealand government intended to explore the possibility of including television and other format productions in the scope of the agreement in the future.
New Zealand is now party to nine international co-production agreements. In the past year the government has signed agreements with Ireland and Spain, and another with South Africa has now been finalised. Work is also underway on agreements with India and China.
The treaty marks only the second such formal and comprehensive film agreement for South Korea. The first was signed with France in October 2006.
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