Government and BFI respond to EC Cinema Communication

The Government and the BFI welcome the news that the European Commission has today published a new Cinema Communication that safeguards the UK’s film tax relief and Lottery funding for film.

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The UK film sector is vital in contributing to the promotion, development and enhancement of culture in the UK, Europe and internationally. The sector supports approximately 117,000 jobs and contributes over £4.6 billion to UK GDP and more than £1.3 billion to the Exchequer and the continuation of the successful UK film tax relief framework is a huge reassurance to the UK film industry and will support the growth of the sector.

After a thorough review of State Aid by the Commission in which the European industry was widely consulted, the concerns raised by the Government and BFI have been acknowledged in this latest Cinema Communication. The new Communication allows Member States to support the evolving need for public intervention in areas such as distribution, exhibition and screen heritage, ensuring the economic and cultural vitality of the industry is sustained. Importantly the Communication also recognises the significance of co-production by allowing the maximum aid intensity to be increased to 60% of the total production budget.

Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, said:

The UK film industry makes a valuable cultural contribution and is an important part of our diverse and dynamic economy. Through the film tax relief we have been able to support this highly skilled, innovative and creative sector and the European Commission’s Cinema Communication will mean we can continue to provide that support.

Ed Vaizey, Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries said:

It is fantastic that we now have a new Cinema Communication in place, confirming the on going viability of our extremely successful film tax regime that attracts moviemakers from all over the world.

Amanda Nevill, CEO, BFI said:

The BFI is delighted that the Commission has listened to our representations, made in partnership with other European countries, on behalf of the industry. This successful outcome is a great example of what can be achieved when the main agencies for film in the UK and across Europe come together and pool expertise.

The BFI will continue working closely with its European counterparts from other national bodies across Europe to promote the audio-visual sector and cultural diversity.

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