More than £1 billion in tax reliefs for creative industry
According to the latest official figures from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), a total of £1.1 billion was paid out in tax reliefs for the creative sector during 2019/20.
The figure represents a rise of more than £30 million on the previous year.
Creative sector tax reliefs aim to increase the level of investment in cultural activity throughout the UK. The sector includes TV, film, animation, video games, theatre, orchestras and museums.
The data has revealed that film tax relief (FTR) accounted for just under half of the total amount paid out, with high-end TV (HETV) the next highest, accounting for 30 per cent.
A total of £522 million worth of FTR was paid in response to 785 claims, representing 740 films.
There were also 110 British programmes completed in 2019/20 which claimed HETV tax relief, with UK expenditure of £1.5 billion, and £324 million was paid in respect of 290 claims.
Each film, programme, animation or video game can make several claims during the production process. One claim can also be used to cover several productions.
The majority of claims made are for smaller amounts, with two-thirds of all claims being for £100,000 or less. However, despite only two per cent of the claims being for more than £5 million, they accounted for 66 per cent of the total amount paid.
The year also saw £71 million of theatre tax relief paid out relating to 1,115 claims, £18 million of orchestra tax relief, and £16 million of museum and galleries exhibition tax relief.
Experts believe that the film and television sector has a vital role to play in the recovery of the UK’s economy post-COVID-19 and are encouraging all companies and charities in these fields to consider claiming, or even revisiting existing claims, as there is often scope for significantly increasing original claims.