Subsidies May Attract Foreign Film Producers to Norway

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A recent report concludes that up to 10 foreign films will choose to film their productions in Norway each year if the Ministry of Culture gives them financial aid.  The goal of introducing financial support to international film producers is to make it more appealing to film on location in Norway. Subsidies may be introduced as tax rebates for investors and producers, or by refunding expenses.

Similar arrangements have already been introduced in Iceland, Ireland, the U.K. and New Zealand. The report that was developed by Oslo Economics on behalf of the Ministry of Culture concludes that it could also pay off for Norway, and within a short time-frame.

“Our cost level is high, but we are an attractive country with a very good infrastructure. The refunds rate should be at about 25-30 percent to have an effect, and we have review our regulations for maximum work hours in order to be flexible,” says Leif Holst Jensen, General Secretary in the association for producers.

Ove Skaug Halsos in Oslo Economics is also positive towards introducing more incentives, but warns again certain potential challenges:

“Although the industry estimates that five-ten foreign productions may be filmed in Norway each year, and that more Norwegian productions will be filmed in Norway, the subsidies may also lead to too many films being made, the wrong movies being made, it may attract people from other industries, and it may not have a significant impact on the economy.”

Minister of Culture Torhild Widvey will send out the report for a political hearing before the conclusion will be presented in the Ministry of Culture’s announcements for film in 2015.

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