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Hong Kong’s film biz seeks China rapport

Execs claim foreign status hurts industry

HONG KONG — Film execs are hoping an appeal to China’s government in October will end Hong Kong’s foreign status.

The Hong Kong Trade Development Council is organizing delegations to Beijing to lobby for the inclusion of the film sector in a controversial pact called the Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement.

Hong Kong reverted from British to Chinese rule in 1997 and is governed under a unique and often confusing “one country, two systems” policy. This means Hong Kong is treated as a separate customs territory and is considered “foreign” in economic matters.

Industry execs argue that this status hurts Hong Kong. The territory’s films are included in the quota of 20 foreign films allowed into China each year on a revenue-sharing basis. Some Hong Kong film companies work around the quota by setting up joint ventures with mainland companies, allowing them to produce a film and use a Chinese distributor.

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