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Serbia increases cash rebate to 25%, doubles annual budget


- The Serbian government has adopted a new decree for its tax incentive, increasing it to 25% and doubling the annual budget to €6.7 million

Serbia increases cash rebate to 25%, doubles annual budget

After two years of running the film incentive programme, the Serbian government adopted the new Decree on Incentivising Investments in Production of Audiovisual Works (Film Incentives) last week. It is now offering a 25% direct cash rebate for shooting on location in Serbia, effective from 15 February.

After supporting a total of 28 projects in 2017, Serbia's Ministry of Economy decided to double the annual budget to €6.7 million available in 2018, while the minimum threshold and relevant entry criteria stay the same for most categories. The only change is related to TV series, which are now required to have a minimum spending of €100,000 per episode. 

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In 2016, total production in Serbia amounted to €20.8 million, and in 2017, the total investment in film production stood at €31.9 million, which proves the effectiveness of the programme.

Former Serbian film commissioner Ana Ilić, now Advisor to the Prime Minister for Digital and Creative Industries, says: “Figures from the previous period show that incentives have attracted €9.60 of production for every euro paid in incentives and created over 2,000 project jobs in the first 16 months of implementation. Feature-film production alone increased by 54% in the previous year. This is a significant boost to the local economy, and we are proud of the fact that Serbian incentives are not only supporting feature films and television, but are also open and offering opportunities to projects in post-production, TVCs and even VR works.” 

The programme is unique in that it has a strand in support of TV commercials, and a total of 17 international advertising projects benefited from the scheme in 2017.

Incoming productions in Serbia spent almost €30 million across all categories envisaged by the programme. The list of projects completed in 2017 includes McMafia (BBC TV series, serviced by Work in Progress), the Intrigo trilogy by Daniel Alfredson and Extinction (both from Universal Pictures, serviced by Work in Progress), and Incoming (Bennatar/Thomas Productions, serviced by Red Production), as well as the Indian blockbuster Vivegam (serviced by Clockwork Film Production).

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