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Source:  http://www.bangkokpost.com/business/telecom/29826/new-push-to-take-thai-cartoons-worldwide

New push to take Thai cartoons worldwide

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Business » Telecommunications

New push to take Thai cartoons worldwide

  • Published: 23/12/2009 at 12:00 AM
  • Newspaper section: Business

Joint productions involving animated film producers from Thailand, the United States, China and India could help bring Thai cartoon characters to international audiences.

As part of the government's "creative economy" campaign, Deputy Commerce Minister Alongkorn Ponlaboot will lead a Thai delegation to the United States next month to discuss with US producers the possibility of developing world-class features on par with Finding Nemo or The Lion King.

The government promises to offer financial support worth of several millions of baht to the new ventures,

"We have to wait first to see what kind of co-operation there would be and who would take care of each parts [of the film production]," he said. "But in terms of cartoon character design, Thai producers are already well-prepared and fully capable."

He said the global animated character business was a fast-growing industry, with market values estimated at US$187.4 billion in 2008.

Thailand's animation industry is estimated at 10 billion baht, 80% of which belongs to international licensed cartoons, with the industry's exports including contracted production worth about 800 million baht a year.

Mr Alongkorn said the government also planned to organise workshops for animation producers and designers and promote contests for potential designers in different fields.

As part of the effort, the government will stage Character & Licensing Expo Asia (Clea 2010) at Siam Paragon from May 6-9 next year.

Animation is among 15 target industries earmarked for government's support under the creative economy development plan.

The Democrat-led government has allocated 20.13 billion baht to support creative-economy ventures with the aim of developing creativity, innovation, craftsmanship and design within the economy.

Funding will be allocated from the 1.43-trillion-baht Thai Khem Kaeng stimulus programme.

The cabinet has already approved a screening committee to pick potential investment projects. To date, the committee has approved more than 40 projects worth 6.92 billion baht with some implemented since October.

About the author

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Writer: Phusadee Arunmas
Position: Business Reporter

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