Government is committed to expanding the economy by paying equal attention to the film and television industry, Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, a Deputy Minister of Information said on Tuesday.

He underscored the politico-socio-economic importance of the social arts, stressing that government would support and develop the sector.

Mr Ablakwa was speaking to a section of a ten-member Chinese delegation, from the Beijing Film Academy (BFA) that called on him at the ministry in Accra.

They are in the country to strengthen bilateral relations with the National Film and Television Institute (NAFTI).

Mr Ablakwa applauded the Chinese government for its continuous support to the country’s socio-economic development and the film and television sector in particular.

He said the National Theatre, as an example, was built with the economic support of the Chinese government.

Mr Ablakwa described China’s economy as one of the biggest and fastest growing, adding it was a “shining example for developing countries like Ghana.”

He said film and television was one of the effective tools for development and stressed that China had efficiently harnessed the sector.

Mr Ablakwa described BFA as one of the oldest bodies that had trained lots of West Africans in the arts and expressed hope that the institute would continue to deepen its relationship with NAFTI.

Professor Zhang HuiJun, President of BFA and the Vice President of the China Filmmakers Association, said his outfit was committed to exchanging faculty, students and academic programmes with NAFTI.

He said NAFTI was an institute of high excellence and good potentials and added that his outfit had not regretted forming partnership with Ghana.

Prof. Linus Abraham, Rector of NAFTI, said his outfit aims at rebuilding its international credential, saying that management had decided to associate with a “credible institute like BFA to rebuild NAFTI.”

He said his institute would organize workshops and faculty exchange programmes with BFA in China to beef up the capacity of the institute.

Prof Abraham told the Ghana News Agency that both NAFTI and BFA were elected members of the Centre International de Liaison des Ecoles de Cinéma et de Télévision (CILECT, English: International Association of Film and Television Schools), an international association of the world’s major film and television schools.

He said NAFTI became a member of the group in 1989 whiles BFA was elected into the association in 1985. He said that members were elected to the association based on excellence.

Source: GNA