Cairo cuts filming fees in bid to boost filming, tourism in Egypt

Global Business

The Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities has approved a 50 percent reduction in fees for the filming of movies and TV shows at Egyptian archaeological sites and museums. It’s a bid to boost tourism in the country, by promoting its sites through foreign productions. The government believes films depicting Egyptian sites could attract tourists to the country.

CCTV’s Adel EL-Mahrouky reports.

Cairo cuts filming fees in bid to boost filming, tourism in Egypt

Cairo cuts filming fees in bid to boost filming, tourism in Egypt

The Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities has approved a 50 percent reduction in fees for the filming of movies and TV shows at Egyptian archaeological sites and museums. It’s a bid to boost tourism in the country, by promoting its sites through foreign productions. The government believes films depicting Egyptian sites could attract tourists to the country. CCTV’s Adel EL-Mahrouky reports.

The sharp decline in tourism revenues, has strangled Egypt’s Antiquities ministry.

For years they remained stagnant, waiting for the industry to flourish.

They’ve tried to increase ticket prices to more than double, but it wasn’t sufficient.

“We’ve suffered during the last six years from the lack of resources. The revenues of ticket sales significantly dropped, our restoration projects froze. We couldn’t wait longer, so we decided that there must be innovative approach to that crisis, to overcome the obstacle tourism face. We’ve decided to focus on a media approach to promote Egypt again,” Al Said Helmy, chief of Islamic and Coptic sector, Ministry of Antiquities said.

The ministry of antiquities has now decided on a 50 percent reduction of filming fees in all archaeological sites across Egypt.

According to a ministry brochure, new filming prices vary according to production type and the historic location requested.

They range from $150 for television shows and go as high as $15000 for cinema production.

On average, prices for Egyptian producers are two-thirds less.

“The idea is to create an incentive for foreign producers to come to Egypt. The next step now is to reach them. There are many regional competitive countries in this area, like Spain Turkey and Morocco. All these countries provide production support to producers. Egypt has priceless sites and we must engage in that,” Helmy said.

In the arab world, Morocco has always been the salvation for film producers.

It won the bid against Egypt in major Hollywood productions, like “Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation” and the “Bourne Ultimatum.”

American producers even preferred to film the “Mummy” series there, they are movies that took place in Ancient Egypt.

To such major American productions filming fees are not an issue, they’d rather look at the facilitation they get to film, instead. It is a good step that Egypt feels it needs to attract these producers here. But without dealing with the bureaucracy of filming permits and security clearances, other regional countries will remain more attractive.