Tax breaks / incentives
With foreign productions bringing $50m a year into the country, there’s no question that the Moroccan authorities do their best to make filming in the country attractive. Morocco’s low production costs are backed by a 20% VAT reduction on goods and service bought in Morocco. Import procedures are also simplified for producers – and it is sometimes possible to get Royal Air Maroc flight discounts. Fees for shooting at historic sites may also be waived. In Ouarzazate, you can save between 30-50% of production costs.
Aside from this, it makes sense to enquire on a case by case basis what logistical backing is available. Support can take unusual forms. For example, Morocco has a reputation for offering help from its military – even sanctioning the use of tanks, helicopters and aircraft in battle scenes. This is particularly useful for films with a Middle East military theme.
At a more general level, Morocco is active in terms of regional and international strategic alliances. Recently, for example, it signed a film co-production agreement with the UK. This gives filmmakers access to funding and support in both countries. It is also part of the MovieMed network, a Mediterranean programme designed to encourage interaction between the film and tourism sectors, promoting the region for shoots.
Mid 2013, the UK and Morocco entered into a co-production treaty for the film industry. Under the new agreement, qualifying productions will be able to access the benefits of national status in each country.