Kazakhstan introduces a new law on cinema, a tax rebate scheme and a National Cinema Centre
by Vassilis Economou
- The Almaty Film Festival and the Almaty Film Commission aim to help to facilitate international co-productions in the Central Asian country
Earlier this year, the Kazakh Senate approved a new law focused on cinema. According to this new law, the production of new local films and their distribution will be supported by the state and, more importantly, Kazakhstan will also be able to attract more international co-productions.
More specifically, the state support will be focused on financing national films, and will be carried out by the State Centre for the Support of National Cinema, a non-commercial joint-stock company. The new centre, among others, will be responsible for the state’s financial support of national films, and the payment of subsidies to foreign productions in Kazakhstan.
Regarding the fiscal subsidies, they will be provided in the form of reimbursement of up to 30% of the goods, works and services related to the production of a film in the Republic of Kazakhstan.
Following that law, the Almaty Film Commission (AFC), which is supported by the Almaty government, aims to facilitate the procedure for foreign investment and attract international co-productions to the region. In addition, the AFC offers consulting services, as a database will soon provide all the necessary information to future applicants, such as location scouting, and promote Almaty as a cultural and tourist centre.
Part of this change is the Almaty Film Festival, a new international event that will be held from 14 to 20 September 2019.
Akan Satayev, the president of the Almaty Film Festival, stated on the importance of the event for the region: “The festival was initiated by the Almaty Government, a special need for it was seen by the former mayor of the city of Almaty Bauyrzhan Kydyrgalievich Baibek. After the Eurasia International Film Festival, which was previously held in Almaty, moved to the capital of Kazakhstan, we faced a festival vacuum. Thus, by joint efforts, we created a new film festival in Almaty, which will be held again this year in September.”
Ernar Kurmashev, the General Producer of Almaty Film Festival, added: “Almaty Film Festival is a powerful tool for the development of local cinema. The main feature of the festival is to promote both the city and the Almaty region as an idyllic shooting location, primarily for international but also for national film productions. Furthermore, we would like to inform and educate our national film industry and communicate on the offers of our facilities in order to align with world standards. For that reason, we also organize a business forum, where we invite international film professionals to conduct masterclasses, share their experiences with our local filmmakers and film professionals. Another feature is our round tables where all the local film industry’s issues will be openly discussed with the assistance of experienced professionals from around the world.”
Regarding the Almaty Film Commission, Kurmashev added: “Last year, our round tables were dedicated to the AFC, where we addressed the questions on how to facilitate the creation and development of co-productions with foreign countries. This year, after the implementation of the law during springtime which also aims to solve many of the previous issues, our round tables discussions will be mainly dedicated to it, but not constrained to that subject as the further development of a local film industry will also be a key topic.”
Did you enjoy reading this article? Please subscribe to our newsletter to receive more stories like this directly in your inbox.