Report on review of film tax support measures released
The Minister for the Arts and Sport, Senator Rod Kemp, today released the report of an Australian Government review of the Refundable Film Tax Offset, the Government’s tax rebate incentive to attract large-budget film and television productions to Australia.
“The Government is very proud of the Australian film production industry and the important role the film tax offset has played in encouraging foreign production companies to make their films here,” Senator Kemp said.
“This review report indicates the film tax offset has assisted the Australian film industry, with the level of offshore production in Australia increasing considerably since the offset’s introduction in 2001.”
Senator Kemp said the offset has also benefited Australia’s local film production industry by creating jobs, and with the skills developed by crew and actors working on offshore productions being used in local productions.
“The film tax offset has allowed Australian film makers to showcase their capabilities to an international audience through their involvement in big budget film and television productions.”
Despite the achievements, the report notes the level of overseas film production in Australia has fallen since 2004–05. It indicates the offset’s effectiveness may have been diluted, notably by other countries introducing more generous incentives of their own—many of which have been modelled on the Australian incentive.
“Many submissions to this review suggested amendments and enhancements to restore the offset’s competitiveness,” Senator Kemp said.
“The Government will consider these suggestions and this review report in the context of its current broader review of all film support measures, and they will inform our efforts to ensure our film support measures remain effective and internationally competitive.”
The Refundable Film Tax Offset scheme offers a 12.5 per cent tax rebate on offshore production expenditure in Australia, and aims to attract large budget productions and increase opportunities for Australian casts, crew, post‑production and other services.
Since 2001, eighteen productions have been certified for the offset, and have collectively spent over $940 million of production expenditure in Australia. Offshore production expenditure has benefited urban, rural and regional areas and, according to the report, is estimated to have led to the creation of up to 690 additional full-time equivalent jobs a year in the Australian film industry.