New East Digital Archive

Russia drops proposed tax on foreign films

Russia drops proposed tax on foreign films
(Image: Gosfilmofond Russia)

11 October 2016

Russian lawmakers have dropped proposed legislation that would, if passed, have taxed profits from Hollywood and foreign films, after criticism from cinemas.

The bill, which aimed to protect the domestic film industry against competition from Hollywood and other foreign films, proposed a tax on net profits. The tax in its original form would have ranged from 5% — 20% and would have applied to films shown on a minimum of 20% of Russian screens. A later version of the proposal demanded a flat 3 ruble ($0.05) tax on all tickets for non-local films, the proceeds from which would have gone towards the domestic Russian film industry.

Russian exhibitors, including cinema operators, expressed opposition to any extra tax, arguing that they would simply not survive if forced to pay any extra, especially given the backdrop of a general economic downturn in the country.

“The [film exhibition] sector said no, and the government had to agree with that,” a source in the culture ministry was quoted as saying by news agency Interfax.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter