Hollyvostok?

Readers' views No 250, July 2005
Executive Vice-President, AMEDIA, Moscow

Your article on Russia sends out some useful signals about the need for reform (“Russia’s economy: Keeping up the good times”, No. 249, May 2005) in areas like energy, banking and so on. However, Russia really is taking off in other business areas, particularly television and film. And why not, given its rich cultural history in music, ballet, theatre and writing?

The German company RTL, owned by the giant Bertelsmann, has just invested €100 million for a 30% stake in Ren TV, the sixth network in Russia. The Swedish Modern Times Group now owns 39.6% of the fourth network in Russia, CTC, which is valued at $1 billion. In five years, the Russian TV advertising market has grown from $240 million to $2 billion, putting it ahead of countries like Spain.

Now the AMEDIA/Sony coproduction, “Poor Anastasia”, a 127-part Russian telenovella, has been sold in over 20 countries worldwide, including Spain, Greece, China and central and eastern Europe. It cost just under $100,000 per episode to produce. In the US it would cost many times that. This is just the beginning of what could be a burgeoning market for Russian series abroad.

The Russian movie industry is also developing rapidly. It has gone from $40 million in 2001 to $290 million in 2004 and is expected to reach $400 million this year. The Russian market is expected to grow rapidly to over $1 billion in the next three years. The US box office was worth $9.4 billion in 2004, but they have 33,000 screens. In Russia there are only 500. Spot the potential: if Russia had one screen for every 50,000 people as in OECD countries, the Russian film, “Turkish Gambit”, the largest movie of all time in the Russian box office, would have grossed $100 million, instead of $20 million! “Lord of the Rings: Return of the King” was the biggest US entry at $14 million.

While Russian movies are growing their domestic market share–US films have slipped from 95% to 85% of Russian movies in the last two years and are expected to be squeezed further–there should also be a significant export market for these films. Another movie, “Nightwatch”, has been bought by Fox for release in the US. In Venice in 2003, the Russian film “The Return” won the Golden Lion and was sold in over 100 countries. And there is a large Russian-speaking community abroad.

While Mr Putin should not, as you say, turn his back on reform, neither should you overlook these new areas which form a key part of Russia’s enormous potential.

Tim Horan
Executive Vice-President, AMEDIA
Moscow


©OECD Observer No 250, July 2005




Economic data

E-Newsletter

Stay up-to-date with the latest news from the OECD by signing up for our e-newsletter :

Twitter feed

Suscribe now

<b>Subscribe now!</b>

To receive your exclusive paper editions delivered to you directly


Online edition
Previous editions

Don't miss

  • Read some of the insightful remarks made at OECD Forum 2017, held on 6-7 June. OECD Forum kick-started events with a focus on inclusive growth, digitalisation, and trust, under the overall theme of Bridging Divides.
  • Checking out the job situation with the OECD scoreboard of labour market performances: do you want to know how your country compares with neighbours and competitors on income levels or employment?
  • Trade is an important point of focus in today’s international economy. This video presents facts and statistics from OECD’s most recent publications on this topic.
  • How do the largest community of British expats living in Spain feel about Brexit? Britons living in Orihuela Costa, Alicante give their views.
  • Brexit is taking up Europe's energy and focus, according to OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría. Watch video.
  • OECD Chief Economist Catherine Mann and former Bank of England Governor Mervyn King discuss the economic merits of a US border adjustment tax and the outlook for US economic growth.
  • Africa's cities at the forefront of progress: Africa is urbanising at a historically rapid pace coupled with an unprecedented demographic boom. By 2050, about 56% of Africans are expected to live in cities. This poses major policy challenges, but make no mistake: Africa’s cities and towns are engines of progress that, if harnessed correctly, can fuel the entire continent’s sustainable development.
  • OECD Observer i-Sheet Series: OECD Observer i-Sheets are smart contents pages on major issues and events. Use them to find current or recent articles, video, books and working papers. To browse on paper and read on line, or simply download.
  • How sustainable is the ocean as a source of economic development? The Ocean Economy in 2030 examines the risks and uncertainties surrounding the future development of ocean industries, the innovations required in science and technology to support their progress, their potential contribution to green growth and some of the implications for ocean management.
  • The OECD Gender Initiative examines existing barriers to gender equality in education, employment, and entrepreneurship. The gender portal monitors the progress made by governments to promote gender equality in both OECD and non-OECD countries and provides good practices based on analytical tools and reliable data.
  • They are green and local --It’s a new generation of entrepreneurs in Kenya with big dreams of sustainable energy and the drive to see their innovative technologies throughout Africa. blogs.worldbank.org
  • Interested in a career in Paris at the OECD? The OECD is a major international organisation, with a mission to build better policies for better lives. With our hub based in one of the world's global cities and offices across continents, find out more at www.oecd.org/careers .

Most Popular Articles

OECD Insights Blog

NOTE: All signed articles in the OECD Observer express the opinions of the authors
and do not necessarily represent the official views of OECD member countries.

All rights reserved. OECD 2017