The government is launching international efforts in a bid to promote Israel's image in the world.
Calcalist has learned that the Tourism Ministry recently appealed to American and Canadian pop singers Lady Gaga and Justin Bieber and Russian opera conductor Valery Gergiev, to help promote the Dead Sea in the New Seven Wonders of Nature competition.
The government, it seems, is convinced that winning the competition has great touristic potential and can boost the drying lake's power of attraction.
Even Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who visited the site several weeks ago to examine the potential overflow of the lake which may put the hotels in danger, took advantage of the opportunity to urge Israel's citizens to vote for the lowest place on earth.
In recent weeks, the Galim Productions company contacted celebrities all over the world on behalf of the State of Israel, suggesting that they take part in a one-minute clip in which the international stars will call on their fans to vote for the Dead Sea.
The plan was to post the clip on YouTube, social networks and the celebrities' own websites and promote their rating until the winning sites are declared in November.
But the efforts were unsuccessful. Bieber and Gergiev turned down the offer, and Lady Gaga never responded. Eventually, the organizers managed to recruit the stars of an Argentinean soap opera " Casi Ángeles", which is popular among teenagers, who accepted the challenge in exchange for hundreds of thousands of shekels.
Last week, the Knesset's Finance Committee allotted NIS 4.5 million ($1.30 million) to the Tourism Ministry for the efforts to promote the Dead Sea in the competition. Some of these funds will be used to produce the clip starring the stars from Argentina.
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