PM Netanyahu eyes cinema tourism to boost Israel’s outreach in India

PM Netanyahu’s visit to India has significance for the domestic tourism industry. His push for co-production of movies and documentaries, eyeing a share of the Indian cinema shooting outbound is likely to amplify Israel’s outreach in the Indian market.

PM Netanyahu’s visit to India is welcome news for the tourism industry as both countries have identified tourism as an important element of bilateral ties. India and Israel are signing deals on amended protocols for airports, and co-production of films and documentaries to boost bilateral movement. These steps are likely to ease flying experience and bring more synergy amongst the cinema industries of both India and Israel.

In a personal and unprecedented outreach, Benjamin Netanyahu would be addressing Bollywood celebrities in an exclusive event – ‘Shalom Bollywood’ – in Mumbai to explore mutual business opportunities in the cinema industry.

In previous years, several European countries, states in the USA and others have tapped Indian cinema industry to amplify their outreach in the domestic market. It has become an important medium of destination promotion and strategic market positioning for NTOs. More recently, co-production of movies has become a preferred way of marketing as it allows more room for NTOs to place their product integral to the storyline, bringing more focus to the destination profile.  Israel’s push, from the very top echelons, to tap the cinema segment bodes well for the tourism industry as newer destinations are likely to be introduced to the discerning Indian traveller, driving enhanced movement and, thus, more business opportunities. 

Earlier, Israeli PM touched down in New Delhi to a special welcome by PM Modi who broke protocol to receive him. In his reciprocal visit, followed by the first ever visit by Indian prime minister to Israel in 2017, he is accompanied with a 130-member strong business delegation. Several bilateral initiatives and business tie-ups are expected during his six-day visit where he would travel to Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Agra and New Delhi.

Before leaving for India, PM Netanyahu had tweeted that his visit served “security, economic, trade and tourism interests, as well as many other areas.” “This is a great blessing for the state of Israel,” he had written.

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