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Cinema biz booming in Balkans

Industryites expect figures to bounce back after slow '05

Theatrical admissions in Central Europe will rise almost 40% to pass 80 million by 2010, according to a study by Blighty-based cinema analysts Dodona Research.

Although 2005 saw a substantial drop in admissions in Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia — the biggest dip was 29% in Romania — industryites in each country expect figures to bounce back this year.

The report predicts rising B.O. across the region, with the biggest growth in Croatia, Slovenia and Slovakia, which are expected to see increasees topping 50% by 2010.

Maturity levels in the exhibition sector vary across the region.

While multiplexes are being built in Poland, the Czech Republic and Bulgaria, both Croatia and Romania are identified as needing investment to develop. In contrast, the more mature market of Hungary saw the first multiplex shutter in 2005.

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