India has increased filming incentives for international productions shooting in the country from 30% to 40% as part of an ongoing bid to attract major projects to film in India.
The cap on qualifying spend has also been substantially increased from $300,000 (INR25m) to $3.6m (INR300m$3.6m) and an additional 5% rebate bonus will be granted to films that feature “significant Indian content”.
International productions eligible for the scheme will need to have been granted shooting permission by India’s Ministry of Information and Broadcasting or the Ministry of External Affairs (for documentaries) since April 1, 2022. The incentive scheme is being handled by the Film Facilitation Office (FFO) set up under the National Film Development Corporation (NFDC).
The announcement was made by India’s Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Anurag Thakur, at the opening of the 54th International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa on Monday (November 20).
Thakur said there was a need for a higher incentive to attract medium and big budget international projects to the country considering India’s size and vast potential. “This paradigm shift in incentivising film production serves as a testament to India’s commitment and support for artistic expression and reinforces our position as a preferred destination for cinematic endeavours”, he added.
A statement from the Ministry also said the move was “part of the efforts to streamline foreign film productions and to ensure ease of doing business in India.”
A long-anticipated incentive for shooting in India was first launched at the Cannes film market by Thakur in May 2022, when the 30% reimbursement on qualifying production expenditure was unveiled.
At the opening of this year’s IFFI, Thakur also paid tribute to actress Madhuri Dixit, who was honoured with the Special Recognition for Contribution to Bharatiya Cinema Award. “An icon across the ages, Madhuri Dixit has graced our screens with unparalleled talent for four incredible decades,” said the minister.
IFFI, which runs until November 28, opened with a screening of UK thriller Catching Dust by Stuart Gatt.
This story originally appeared on our sister site Screen