Bucharest, August 20, 2020 – The Ministry of Economy, Energy and Business Environment (MEEMA), serving as a provider of the state aid scheme to support the film industry, taken over from the National Commission for Strategy and Forecast, wants to streamline the implementation of this program in compliance with the ongoing legislation that is applicable to the field of state aid and the fundamental principles in the use of public funds.
Therefore, at the initiative of MEEMA, on Wednesday, August 19, 2020 the Government of Romania adopted the Decision of amending and supplementing the Government Decision no. 421/2018 for the establishment of a state aid scheme to support the film industry.
Firstly, by adopting this decision, a further EUR 150 million has been allocated for the next three years, to support this industry. Thus, the maximum budget of the state aid scheme reached 1.2 billion lei, the equivalent of approximately 250 million euros. The amount is broken down into commitment appropriations for the issuance of financing agreements for the period 2018-2023 and budgetary appropriations for the payment of state aid for the period 2018-2025.
Non-reimbursable financial allocations will amount to 35% of the total eligible expenses. These refer to the acquisition, rental, manufacture of goods and / or services occasioned by the development of film projects and film production in Romania, as well as fees, salaries and other payments made to individuals related to the implementation of the project. An important thing to emphasize is that the allocation is granted in the conditions in which at least 20% of the total budget of the project is realized on Romanian territory.
Another objective of this state aid scheme is to promote Romania as a tourist destination. Thus, a percentage of 10% will be granted over the allocation of 35% if in the audiovisual productions, financed within the same cinematographic production, a geographical area, a city or Romania, the tourist destinations and objectives in our country or language will be highlighted, as well as Romanian traditions and customs. Another condition is that the development of the subject of the film must be visually explicit.
The verification of eligible projects, on a „first come, first served” basis, will be performed by the Film Commission in Romania, which will include personalities from the university environment, representatives of the cultural and artistic environment, people with experience in cinema, people with experience in business, lawyers, economists with experience in finance / accounting and auditors with at least 3 years of experience in the field of state aid.
The state aid scheme for supporting the film industry has a multi-annual character and runs until 31.12.2023, with the possibility of extension. Until this date, financing agreements can be concluded on the basis of this scheme, in compliance with the state aid legislation, within the limit of the commitment credits approved annually by the state budget law for this program.
The management of the state aid scheme also involves the enactment of application norms, which will be approved by order of the Minister of Economy, Energy and Business Environment, within 30 days from the date of entry into force of this amended decision.