ISTANBUL- Pakistan and Turkiye have agreed to increase cooperation in tourism, culture, film, drama and other fields to take their bilateral ties to the next level.
Various measures will be taken for the purpose decided at two separate meetings of the Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Marriyum Aurangzeb, with a delegation from the Turkish film industry and the Deputy Minister of Culture and Tourism of Turkey, Ahmet Misbah Demircan.
At the meetings, both sides agreed to promote bilateral cooperation in the acting and film industries, set up a modern film processing laboratory in Pakistan, and enter into the joint venture to launch “screen tourism”.
The Minister of Information announced that Pakistan will attend the upcoming Turkiye Film Festival to showcase its best talents in the film industry.
Marriyum said the two countries maintain deep friendly ties, adding that Turkiye’s role in Pakistan’s development is unforgettable.
She said Pakistan is keen to launch “screen tourism” in cooperation with Turkiye, which would eventually help both countries highlight their cultural diversity and natural beauty at the international level.
Marriyum said her government formulated the country’s first-ever film and culture policy, which included tax exemptions and incentives for the industry. The use of modern technology is part of the national film policy to improve production quality and stories, she added.
She said the government eliminated separate taxes for the film, tourism and culture sectors in the 2022 federal budget.
Foreign filmmakers are also given discounts for launching joint film and theater projects locally, she noted.
The minister said her government is making efforts to boost business activities in various sectors, including tourism and culture.
She said the government has also eliminated the sales tax and entertainment tax on importing equipment needed to produce new films and dramas.
Marriyum said steps have been taken to incentivize artists and revitalize cinema culture in Pakistan by establishing new cinemas and rehabilitating the old ones. It was the best time to involve 70 percent of youth in the film and tourism industries.
She said the government will invite renowned producers to the international film workshops being organized in the country for youth.
She said Pakistan was the third largest film producer in the world in 1970. The film and drama, she added, played an important role in enhancing a country’s image internationally.
Referring to Pakistan’s participation in the upcoming film festival, she said three new Pakistani films could be screened at the mega-event.
She said cooperation with Turkish universities will be sought to include filmmaking subjects in the academic curriculum.
A feasibility report will be drawn up for joint ventures between the two countries in the film industry, the minister said.
She said Turkish filmmakers can produce their films in the northern areas of Pakistan, which are rich in natural beauty.
Massive funds have been allocated for the preservation of numerous archaeological sites in Pakistan, she said, adding that these sites are archaeological sites in Pakistan the best assets for tourism sector development.
Pakistan, she said, would learn from Turkiye’s experience in developing the tourism sector.
Turkey’s Deputy Minister of Tourism and Culture assured Marriyum of any possible cooperation from his country in the development of the tourism sector.
Meanwhile, Turkey’s film industry delegation said in a separate meeting that the best companies of the Netherlands and France based in their country could provide technical assistance to set up the film developing laboratory in Pakistan.