Cinema admissions in Scandinavia and the Baltic region are set to top 60 million by 2005, as cinema development begins to take hold in the relatively under-established Baltic markets of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, according to a report by industry analysts Dodona Research.

Lithuania, the largest of the Baltic States, has only 88 screens and was one of the last territories in the region to attract interest in cinema development. However admissions for 2000 stood at an impressive 2.1 million. Three multiplexes are currently planned for the territory.

Elsewhere, Estonia's first multiplex opened its doors in March this year, and a 15-screen cinema is planned for Riga, Latvia late next year.

In comparison, the more developed Scandinavian markets offer limited opportunities, with territories like Denmark and Finland counting around 350 screens each.

The exception is Norway, where the dominant municipal cinema sector is being privatised, leading to competition among private investors and exhibitors from other countries in the region to capture market share. After Iceland, Norway is the region's second highest cinemagoing territory with 11.59 million admissions from 391 screens in 2000.

Admissions in the region were bolstered last year by a string of successful local films, such as Lukas Moodysson's Together, which garnered over $5.5m at the Swedish box office.

Prospects for local product in the region are bright this year, with films such as Petter Naess' Elling earning more than $3.9m at the Norwegian box office.

Country'...Screens''..Admissions (million)