3 miljoni eiro filmu industrijai

Translated using ChatGPT service.

On May 7, 2024, the Cabinet of Ministers decided to allocate additional state budget funding of €2,984,598 for foreign film production in Latvia. This co-financing is a significant support for the operational stability of industry companies. The services provided by the film industry substantially stimulate the country's economic development and recognition. With this co-financing, employment in various economic sectors, including those not directly related to the film industry, is effectively promoted, while also enhancing the international competitiveness of film industry professionals and promoting the country's image.

The film industry influences business development and export growth, which is especially significant in the regions, and promotes the growth of tourism services export, as travelers consciously seek and choose destinations featured in films, series, and TV shows. Film-induced tourism has already become popular in many places worldwide, and its impact is significant.

“Through film projects, not only does the Latvian producer, who has submitted the application and signed a contract with a foreign producer, benefit, but also various sectors directly and indirectly related to the film industry, such as equipment and technology, design and printing, cultural venues and museums, accommodation and catering services, transport and logistics services, real estate rental, security, cleaning, decoration creation and installation, and municipal services, among others. Additionally, in the context of the business environment, competition will develop the competence, knowledge, and experience of local film industry and other related industry companies, strengthening competitiveness in the region,” emphasizes Minister of Economics Viktors Valainis.

As is known, to attract foreign investment, various financial mechanisms, both tax and fund-based, have been established in many countries in Europe and worldwide to financially incentivize foreign film producers to shoot films in a specific country, recovering part of the invested funds. The Latvian government also approved a state support program for foreign film production in Latvia in March 2022, developed by the Ministry of Economics.

The Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (LIAA) organizes an open competition for project application selection to allocate state co-financing for foreign film production in Latvia. The 6th round of the 2024 state budget co-financing competition for foreign film production in Latvia was announced from November 13, 2023, to December 13, 2023. Within this round, seven projects have been approved, which will be fully or partially implemented in Latvia. It is planned that these seven film projects will attract investments of more than €16 million to Latvia in 2024. The planned Latvian state co-financing is €3,706,297.85 (LIAA available funding – €82,200), with the state budget expected to receive more than €4 million in tax payments.

With Latvian co-financing, SIA “CINEVILLA FILMS” and Germany's “STORY HOUSE Picture GmbH” will continue the production of the well-known European drama “SISI 4.” Additionally, SIA “FILM ANGELS STUDIO” and Germany's “Network Movie Film- und Fernsehproduktion GmbH / Studio Zentral,” in collaboration with “Netflix Worldwide Entertainment,” will produce the 7-episode film “ABRAKADABRA,” which will be entirely filmed in Latvia. SIA “White Picture,” in collaboration with France's “SLOT MACHINE S.A.R.L,” will produce the film “Danish Woman.” Significant investments will also be attracted to Latvia by SIA “Bergmane Production” and Estonia's “360 MEDIA OÜ” for the film “Detective Fox.” These projects are expected to be substantial and popular across Europe, directly promoting Latvia’s film industry and attracting new interests and investments to Latvia as a country where high-quality, large-scale film projects can be realized.

As previously informed, the conditions for receiving support are determined by the regulations developed by the Ministry of Economics and adopted by the Cabinet of Ministers on March 15, 2022, No. 173 "Procedure for Granting State Budget Co-Financing for Foreign Film Production in Latvia." The available co-financing amount for one project is 20% of the total eligible expenses specified in the co-financing agreement, while the co-financing amount for eligible salary costs is 30%. Co-financing is granted if the film mentioned in the project application simultaneously meets the following conditions: the film is fully or partially shot in Latvia; the services of physical or legal persons registered in Latvia are used in the film's production; the total project costs for feature films and animation films reach at least €711,436, and for documentary films at least €142,287; on the day of submitting the project application, the foreign producer has available financing according to the financing plan of at least 50% of the total film production costs.

Since 2022, when LIAA took over the administration of the Program from the National Film Centre, a total of 27 film projects have been submitted, of which 16 have received co-financing for foreign film projects in Latvia. The creators of these films invested around €18 million in Latvia, with the state co-financing amounting to €3.6 million, from which more than €4 million were obtained in tax payments to the state budget. So far, the Agency has supported the production of films such as the 2nd and 3rd seasons of the drama “SISI” by SIA “CINEVILLA FILMS” and Germany's “STORY HOUSE Picture GmbH,” the film “HARBINA” by SIA “FILM ANGELS STUDIO” and France's “Keystone Films,” the film “Anna” by SIA “Forma Pro Films” and the UK's “ANNA FILM PRODUCTION,” the film “Disappearance” by SIA “Forma Pro Films” and France's “CG Cinema,” the film “Smilla's Sense of Snow” by SIA “CINEVILLA FILMS” and Germany's “Constantin Television GmbH,” among others.