Film distribution companies accused of monopolistic practice

The Egyptian Competition Authority (ECA) has accused seven film companies of imposing restrictions on distribution.

On May 19, the authority received reports from the Egyptian Company for Media Investments chairman that cited monopolistic practices in film distribution market.

After the ECA conducted a study on film distribution from 2007 to 2010, seven companies were revealed to have conspired to restrict film distribution inside Egypt.

According to the study, the agreement struck between seven companies stated that each company would screen films at cinemas under their ownership. The agreement also stipulated the allocation of some films for screening at independent cinemas. These efforts guaranteed viewing exclusivity as independent cinemas would screen only one company’s films.

The study also found the majority of Egypt’ cinema tycoons stuck to the traditional production and distribution model. In 2009, the Egyptian Chamber of Cinema Industry said film production only slightly decreased from 2007 to 2008.

Meanwhile, Arab Producers Union and the General Division of TV and Film Production condemned the accusations, labeling them “untrue”. 

The ECA board of directors referred their findings to Minister of Trade and Industry Rachid Mohamed Rachid.

The Egyptian Chamber of Cinema Industry has called for an urgent meeting with the seven companies.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.

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