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21/08/2015

New UK Film Tax Relief Approved

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The UK's Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, has announced that a new higher rate of film tax relief for Britain has been approved by the EU.

The plans will see the country's £1.4bn film industry receive a tax credit of 25% on all qualifying expenditure, bringing it in line with TV tax relief. For example, a British film costing £40m, will receive an additional £1m towards productions costs from the change.

The scheme will be backdated to April 2015, the Chancellor added, as he visited the set of Agatha Raisin, a new British TV series being filmed in Wiltshire that is benefiting from the government's high-end TV tax relief. Under the scheme the government provides a tax credit of 25% on qualifying British TV productions.

Mr Osborne said: "British made films are watched and celebrated all over the world – last year alone we saw eight British made films nominated for an Oscar. A key part of our long term economic plan is supporting our creative industries that contribute billions to the economy and provide millions of jobs. We want to see more films, like Gravity and Avengers: Age of Ultron, made in Britain and that's why we've made our film tax relief even more generous."

Amanda Nevill, CEO, British Film Institute, added: "The film tax relief is a key ingredient in the UK's winning combination of outstanding filmmaking talent and crews, world-leading studios and facilities, and iconic locations. It keeps us competitive on the world stage, and helps grow our economy and create jobs at home. We warmly welcome this extension to the tax relief and the government's continued commitment to the UK's thriving film industry."

Ivan Dunleavy, Chief Executive, Pinewood Group plc, commented: "The Chancellor's announcement of further enhancing Film Tax Credit is a clear demonstration of how this government has supported UK Film and helped fuel growth in the creative industries to the benefit of the taxpayer. We look forward to working with UK and global film producers and keeping the UK at the heart of international film and television production."

The government's film tax relief has supported almost £8bn of production expenditure since its introduction, including films such as Oscar-winning Gravity, Maleficent and Harry Potter. In 2014 alone, it supported 222 films.

The move to increase the rate of film tax relief was first announced by the Chancellor in the March 2015 Budget, but it needed to be approved by the EU under state-aid rules.

(JP)
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