ENTERTAINMENT

Global movie festival

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Mandela Bay in the Eastern Cape will host the biggest film festival in the southern hemisphere in December 2015. Already rumoured to South Africa’s most important Film Festival yet, organisers are pulling out all the stops to ensure a successful annual event that will focus the world’s film industry on South Africa and attract global interest.

Nkosinathi Benson Fihla, Executive Mayor of the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, says the Film Festival will further entrench his Executive Mayoral Committee’s commitment to real, vibrant and sustainable change in the region and will ensure strong growth within the metros that support the Eastern Cape.

The Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency in partnership with Eastern Cape Provincial Government is backing the Film Festival project as this is a crucial part in helping strong economic growth in the Nelson Mandela Bay area.  CEO, Luxolo Rubushe, says international trends are showing that cities themselves are becoming central to promoting tourism which is a powerful economic stimulus.

While full details are still being kept under wraps, Eastern Cape Economic Development MEC, Mcebisi Jonas, says further details will be made public in the coming weeks. He went on to say that the Film Festival falls within his Department's broad economic strategy to promote investment and economic growth in the Eastern Cape's two Metropolitan Municipalities and to stimulate the economy in a different direction. The investment strategy will be in place for the next two years and will climax at the end of 2015 when the Festival takes place.

Jonas said his Department had adopted a joint investment strategy with the Metro which looks at a range of ways of promoting investment into the region. Projects such as the Kalagadi Manganese Smelter and the motor manufacturing industry in East London are a few of the many initiatives in place to grow the metros of the Eastern Cape. He said Nelson Mandela Bay had to be positioned as a global city to improve its competitiveness.

This event will run from 3 – 12 December 2015 and has already elicited excitement among potential stakeholders.

Mandela Bay, South Africa's only river port, is a gateway to the country’s Sunshine Coast to its south and the Wild Coast to the north, offering not only an exceptional venue for the film festival, but an opportunity for attendees to see one of the gems of the South African coastline.

Bridget von Holdt

                                              

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