International spend on British film and TV hits record levels as creative sector tax reliefs continue to attract investment

International film and television companies spent record amounts of qualifying expenditure on UK-based productions in 2019, a major report has revealed.
The research, published by the British Film Institute (BFI), shows that overseas investment in UK film and high-end television grew by 16 per cent to £3.6 billion – the highest on record.
The figures show that overseas spend on film production reached £1.956 billion, representing a seven per cent increase, while spend on high-end TV production hit £1.66 billion, an increase of 29 per cent.
Commenting on the report, the BFI notes that the figures reflect the “supportive fiscal environment” created by the UK’s creative sector tax reliefs.
“Today’s figures show an incredibly vibrant picture, a sector that continues to grow, delivering billions to the economy and a wide spectrum of jobs all over the UK. It’s great to see some of our greatest home-grown talent making big international pictures such as 1917. It also underlines the importance of ensuring that the independent sector, the lifeblood for this growing success, is properly supported,” said CEO Amanda Nevill.
A separate study published earlier this month, meanwhile, revealed that tax reliefs across film, high-end television, video games, animated programmes and children’s TV is “empowering unprecedented levels of production in the UK”.
In total, figures show that an estimated £632 million in tax relief seeded £3.16 billion in direct production spend in 2016, representing a 17 per cent increase compared to the year previous.
“Tax reliefs play a crucial role supporting the UK’s competitiveness as a creative destination, attracting international inward investment production in the face of strong global competition. They have also helped lead to a repatriation of high-end TV productions which would otherwise have been made outside the UK,” said the BFI.
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