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Shanghai oozes culture

THE World Expo has substantially stimulated the development of Shanghai's cultural sector, government officials said yesterday.

By the time the Expo ends its six month run, more than 400 stage performances from international troupes will have been held in town, all outside the Expo site, officials said.

This is more than double the amount for all of last year, when less than 200 international performances were held in the city.

In addition to the performances, there will be more than 30,000 art exhibitions held outside the Expo site in the city this year.

"There have been more than 10,000 performances given at the Expo site in the first three months," said Bei Zhaojian, director of the Shanghai Municipal Administration of Culture Radio Film & Television.

"Some of those troupes from overseas and across China also performed at other venues outside of the Expo in Shanghai, giving people here a great chance to enjoy some performances."

Bei spoke at a press conference held yesterday by the city government, which released a report titled "2009 Shanghai Culture Industry Development."

According to the report, there were 560,100 people working in the cultural sector in Shanghai last year.

The sector's total output reached nearly 356 billion yuan, increasing 85 billion yuan, or 7.2 percent, compared with 2008.

The cultural creative sector developed rapidly last year.

Fifteen city-level culture industry parks were authorized last year in Shanghai.

Last year, the city completed changing city-level film and television producers into business entities, said Zhang Zhijing, vice director of the Publicity Department of the CPC Shanghai Municipal Committee.

Sixty commercial publishing units, 90 non-political newspapers, and six municipal cultural troupes were also restructured to enterprises.

Culture information services, including online games, also developed quickly last year and will be a highlight of the sector in the future.


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