B.C. film industry tax credit to go under review

WATCH: The B.C. film industry is prosperous right now, thanks to the low dollar and provincial tax credits. But as Jennifer Palma reports, there are fears the tax credits could be axed from the picture.

The B.C. government says it will work with the movie and TV industry to review the film tax credit as the lower Canadian dollar already offers a discount.

According to Peter Leitch from the Motion Picture Production Industry Association of B.C., that might not be such a bad thing.

In an interview with BC1’s Sonia Sunger, Leitch says the industry sees the government as a partner as they try to find a solution that benefits both sides.

“We want to make sure that the tax credits are sustainable for the long term,” said Leitch. “We’re happy to work with government to make sure that we’ve right-sized the tax credits and that they’re doing what they expect them to do in terms of creating thousands of jobs and dumping millions of dollars in to the economy.”

Leitch says he’s not worried about the credit going away because it influences B.C. based labour.

“British Columbia credits are based on labour and B.C. labour so this is going to employ B.C. labour right in the province and we’ve got some of the best creative talent anywhere and I think that’s an important part of it also,” he says.

“When one of these big shows comes up here or television series, half the money gets dumped in to the economy with small businesses benefiting anywhere from hotels to lumber yards to dress shops. So we think it’s a great industry for the province, a great way to diversify the economy here.”

Leitch says they will work with the government to see if there are any adjustments they can make that won’t change the impact they have in the industry while also allowing the government to maintain a balanced budget.

WATCH: Over the past few years the B.C. film industry has gone through many ups and downs. With the film tax credit set to go under review following the 2016 provincial budget announcement, Global News takes a look back at the industry’s struggles. 

© 2016 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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