The Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys TD, has announced enhanced tax breaks for the film and television sector in an effort to attract major international film productions to Ireland and give the indigenous film sector a boost. The tax breaks available under Section 481 see the value of the scheme increase from 28% to 32%. Also the definition of those eligible to benefit from the scheme is being extended to include non-EU talent, with an aim to attract big-name Hollywood talent.
According to Minister Humphreys, “Our film and TV production sector is going from strength to strength, despite the economic challenges we have faced in recent years. I want to make Ireland a first choice destination for international filmmakers, and improving the tax breaks available under Section 481 will be essential to achieve this. “The Irish film and TV production sector supports up to 6,000 jobs; I want to see that number grow in the years ahead. The changes to Section 481 will give a greater deal of certainty to the Irish audiovisual sector and will allow it to maintain the existing jobs in the sector and create new ones.
“Under the changes… the definition of ‘eligible individual’ is being extended to include non-EU talent, so major Hollywood actors and actresses will be included. This will boost the attractiveness of Ireland as a destination for film investment, and brings us into line with the UK and other countries in Europe.
“Ireland has developed a strong reputation as being a superb film location in recent years. It was a fantastic achievement to bring Star Wars to Skellig Michael during the summer. And we have become home to some of the biggest TV shows, including The Tudors, Vikings and Penny Dreadful. When these shows come to Ireland, they hire local talent and crews and make a huge contribution to the local economy.
“My Department has worked closely with the Irish Film Board, the Revenue Commissioners, the Department of Finance and the industry itself to bring about these changes, which I believe will have a very positive impact on the Irish film and TV sector. I have also secured a commitment from the Minister for Finance to keep these changes under close review, with a view to introducing additional improvements which would help further boost the indigenous film sector and attract big budget productions to Ireland.”
Still no match for Northern Ireland.