The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed has said that the inclusion of animation in the nigerian film content will create employment and promote economic development.
Mohammed made this known at the opening ceremony of the 4th French and Japanese Embassies Animated Film Festival at the Institut francais du Nigeria in Abuja.
Mohammed, who aws was represented by Deacon Grace Gekpe, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, explained that the inclusion of animation will promote culture, create jobs for youths and promote economic empowerment in the country.
He noted that animation film is a platform to champion and support film makers to use animation in the production of unique cinematic visions and promote culture to younger generations.
Economically, he said, “animation has employed hundreds of thousands of artists, animators, producers and technicians to produce huge demand for diverse content in the world.
Artistically, he added, “the craft of animation has spurred amazing advancements in storytelling since its inception and it has proven to be one of the best forms of impacting knowledge and creative ideas to its audiences.
“Animation industry has a great role to play in shaping the minds of our children and instilling in them our diverse cultural heritage.
“It will be hard for us to imagine a childhood without all of the animated characters that fill our imagination.
“The government, in its efforts to diversify the economy, has recognised the film industry as a sector of focus in its diversification agenda through the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan,’’ he said.
Also speaking at the event, Yutaka Kikuta, the Japanese Ambassador to Nigeria stressed that culture is the strength of a country.
He informed that the Japan and French cultural collaboration had resulted in annual animation film festival aimed at promoting their cultures to Nigerian people and enhanced cultural exchange between them and Nigeria.
“We strongly believe that creating a deep connection with the Nigerian people in the area of cultural exchange is no less important than the area of political and economic exchange.
“This is why we have the line-up of Nigerian short films at this animated film festival for the promotion and betterment of this growing industry in Nigeria.” He said