Written answers

Tuesday, 26 February 2019

Department of Finance

Film Industry Tax Reliefs

Photo of Pat CaseyPat Casey (Wicklow, Fianna Fail)
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130. To ask the Minister for Finance the status of his proposed changes to section 481 tax relief for film production; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9261/19]

Photo of Paschal DonohoePaschal Donohoe (Dublin Central, Fine Gael)
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Section 481 TCA 1997 provides a 32% payable credit for eligible expenditure on film production in Ireland. It is available to Irish and international film production companies that are resident in the State or in an EEA State and carry on business in the State through a branch or subsidiary.

A number of significant changes were made to the credit as part of 2018 Finance Bill process. In recognition of the nature of the production cycle and the long lead in times needed for productions to be undertaken, the credit was extended from its original end date of 31 December 2020 to 31 December 2024. Additionally, it was legislated to require production companies to apply for payment of the tax credit under the self-assessment system. This brings the operation of the credit within the normal penalty and prosecution provisions for incorrect claims. The application process has also been divided between the Revenue Commissioners and the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, it is envisioned that this will in particular contribute to alleviating the much publicised delays being experienced when applying for the credit.

Finance Bill 2018 also provided for a new short-term, tapered regional uplift, commencing at 5%, for productions being made in areas designated under the State aid regional guidelines. The regional uplift will be introduced subject to State aid approval. The regions availing of the uplift will be limited to areas in Ireland sanctioned to receive regional aid under the EU regional aid guidelines.

The process of notifying the EU of the regional uplift is currently underway but it is not possible to give a definitive timeline as to when this process will be completed.

Revenue is currently bringing forward the Regulations which are necessary to give effect to the aforementioned Finance Act 2018 amendments. The Regulations must be introduced with the consent of both myself and my colleague, the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and I understand that officials in both Departments are currently reviewing the relevant drafts with a view to providing final drafts for signature in early course.


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