There are four main streams of audio visual tax incentives are offered by the Fiji Government and administered by Film Fiji.
These are detailed in the Income Tax (Film-making and Audio-visual Incentives) Regulations 2016.
Film Tax Rebate
The Film Tax Rebate is available to fully-funded off-shore productions. A Production entity is eligible for a 47% tax rebate, calculated on Qualifying Fiji Production Expenditure(QFPE), when it lodges its application at the end of the production. The applicant for rebate must meet all the requirements for Film Tax Rebate set out under Part IV of the Income Tax (Film-making and Audio Visual Incentives) Regulations 2016.
Qualifying Fiji Production Expenditure (QFPE)?
QFPE includes local spend and other special inclusions, which are:
- Air Fare: Return air fares for all foreign cast and crew will be QFPE only for travel on Fiji Airways. If foreign cast and crew are travelling on any aircraft not operated by Fiji Airways then 15% of the expenditure incurred on those return air fares will be QFPE.
- Insurance: Insurance premium paid for the purpose of the production in Fiji will be QFPE if insurance is purchased from a local insurance company in Fiji.
- Locations scouting visit: Expenses incurred in Fiji on goods and services whilst on the final locations survey is QFPE.
- Costumes, make-up and set design: 75% of the expenditure incurred to purchase costumes, make-up, set design properties and other props not available in Fiji that will be used in relation to the film production in Fiji, provided that any such costumes, make-up, set design property or other prop shall be left in Fiji at the end of the production and is reusable. If a film production company requires the use of any such costumes, make-up, set design property or other prop left in Fiji for the purpose of re-shooting the film outside Fiji, that production company shall make a written request to the Minister and all expenditure incurred in obtaining any such costumes, make-up, set design property or other prop shall be borne by the production company and shall not qualify for film tax rebate.
- Post production allowance: Post production allowances will be QFPE and varies according to the budget of the film’s budget : $75,000 if budget up to $3m/$100,000 if budget up to $5m/$150,000 if budget up to $7m/$200,000 if budget up to $10m/$250,000 if budget more than $10m – all Fiji dollars.
- Producer’s fees: Expenses incurred for services by the producer will be QFPE but it will not exceed 10% of the total production expenditure on goods and services purchased in Fiji.
- Writer’s fee: Expenses incurred for services by the writer will be QFPE provided that the rights are registered in Fiji.
- Hiring of Cameras and Filming Equipment: Cost of hiring cameras and filming equipment from outside Fiji will be QFPE provided that such cameras and filming equipment is not available in Fiji.
- Raw Stock: Cost of raw stock will be QFPE if supplied by a local company.
- Foreign cast: Salaries for services rendered in Fiji by foreign cast will be QFPE but it will not exceed 20% of total QFPE claimed.
There is no minimum percentage of the film that needs to be shot in Fiji. However, there needs to be a minimum QFPE of FJ$250,000 for large format films, feature films, short films and television shows and FJ$50,000 for television commercials. The maximum allowable tax rebate is FJ$28.2 million.
Requirements for this Incentive?
- The production company is a locally registered company.
- Minimum qualifying Fiji production expenditure of FJ$250,000 for large format films, feature films, short films and television shows and FJ$50,000 for television commercials.
- The production company must demonstrate that it is able to release and distribute the film in at least one significant international market.
- The production must only engage a local Line Producer or Coordinator who is a licensed Audio Visual Agent.
- The production company must have Workman’s Compensation for all locals engaged in the production and insurance cover, including public liability cover, for all locations used.
- The production company is required to transfer all production funds to Fiji before commencement of principal photography.
- The production company will be required to submit cost reports and production reports on a fortnightly basis when production commences in Fiji.
- The production company will be required to submit a production schedule before production commences.
- At the end of the production, the production company must submit audited accounts of the production expenditure.
- The production company shall only be eligible for Film Tax Rebate if you apply for the final certificate through a person, lawyer or accountant that is licensed under the Film Fiji Act 2002 as an Audio Visual Agent.
- The production must acknowledge the Government of Fiji and Film Fiji in the film.
- Regardless of the jurisdiction that the film’s story is portraying, the film must state “Filmed on location in Fiji” in the final edited version of the film.
Productions must first apply to Film Fiji for a Provisional Approval. The submission of a detailed budget and script is essential.