Minister Madigan launches plan to double employment in Audio-visual Sector

Audiovisual and animation industry worth over €1 billion to the Irish Economy

The Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan T.D. today launched her Department’s €200m Audio-visual Action Plan.  The industry-wide, long-term plan, under the Creative Ireland Programme, will support the Government’s ambition to enable Ireland to become a global hub for the production of Film, TV drama and animation.

The key points in the Plan include:

  • Consider extending Section 481 tax relief, as well as increasing the expenditure ceiling, revising the regulations and extending the relief to Ireland’s games sector.
  • A review by Screen Ireland of funding models for other countries’ film agencies.
  • Increased capital funding for the film sector including co-production and development funding, a specific fund for the development of films and TV drama, a fund for new Irish TV drama, a regional production fund and additional training of film workers and crew.
  • Increased business skills development, matching of skills with production growth and partnering with third level institutions in skills development.
  • Increased marketing measures including measures to attract major computer games studios to Ireland.
  • A steering group will prioritise measures, oversee implementation and monitor risks, reporting regularly to Minister Madigan.

The Audiovisual Action Plan is underpinned by an Economic Assessment of the Audio-Visual Industry in Ireland carried out by international consultants Olsberg SPI with Nordicity on behalf of the Departments of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Communications, Climate Action and Environment and Business, Enterprise and Innovation. As well as measuring the size and impact of the industry, the consultants identified a range of key strategic recommendations which would assist the future development and growth of the audiovisual sector in Ireland.

The consultants concluded that with the implementation of their policy recommendations, Ireland’s “film, television and animation” sector could in a period of five years, double employment to over 24,000 full-time equivalents and a gross value added of nearly €1.4 billion.

Speaking at the Irish Film Institute Minister Madigan said “Today we start building on the success of the Irish audio-visual industry which has reached across the world.  This year we had Nora Twomey’s The Breadwinner, produced by Cartoon Saloon – an amazing Irish company with global reach – building on a strong run of successes at the Oscars and Cannes in recent years with films such as Room and The Lobster.  We are also an attractive location for international productions – in recent years Star Wars has brought a new audience to the delights of our west coast.

“Ireland has the creative talent, the storytelling and literary history, international credibility, geographic location and incentive structures to be a global leader, to tell compelling Irish and universal stories on screen, and to grow and sustain a vibrant creative audio-visual sector. Our Irish cultural heritage introduces Ireland on the world stage and allows us to express our national identity.   Film in particular offers us a way to do that in very impactful way.”

“Agus, ar ndóigh, ag caint faoi Iarthar na hÉireann, tá tionscal nach beag tógtha i nGaillimh agus i gConamara, bunaithe ar thacaíocht an Rialtais do TG4. Tá gradam UNESCO mar chathair scannán bainte amach ag Gaillimh de bharr an tionscail seo, agus beidh sé go mór chun tosaigh i nGaillimh 2020– Cathair Chultúrtha na hEorpa.”

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD said, “This initiative could not come at a more opportune time. Facing into a climate of global economic uncertainty, it is more important than ever to develop strong, resilient and innovative companies that have the capacity to provide skilled, quality jobs. I know first-hand that we have the talent and drive necessary to succeed in this competitive market. This plan is an important step towards achieving this vision.”

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Denis Naughten TD commented, “I particularly welcome the proposal for specific funds to support new TV drama production and regional production. My officials will continue to work closely with the Department of Culture and the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland to implement this exciting plan.”

Both the Audiovisual Action Plan and the Olsberg Report are available here.

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