The Ministry of Economy of the Government of Serbia has announced a Call for Applications on April 15, 2016 for film and TV incentives that is open year round. The program provides a 25% cash rebate on qualified Serbian spend for feature films, TV series, animation films, documentaries and visual effects, 20% for TV commercials and 30% cash rebate on qualified Serbian spend for feature films whose budget is minimum 5.000.000 EUR
The applications should be submitted to the Film Center Serbia.
Relevant documents with details of the program, what is and is not considered qualified Serbian spend and the procedure are attached below. These include the Decree on the Incentive Program, the Rulebook (Guidelines) and the public Call for Applications.
Should you need any help with understanding the regulations and preparing your application, we will be happy to assist you. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
25% of Qualifying Serbian Spend for features, TV Series, documentaries, animation and post-production
20% for TV Commercials
30% for feature films with Serbian Spend of minimum 5.000.000 EUR
Open all year.
Applicants must be a legal entity registered in Serbia and which is responsible for paying all relevant Serbian taxes for the production.
Feature films, TV films and TV series: 300.000 EUR (~$331.000), with 100.000 EUR minimum per episode for TV series
Animated film, audio and/or visual post-production: 150.000 EUR (~$166.000)
Special-purpose film/TV Commercials: 150.000 EUR (~$166.000)
Documentary films: 50.000 EUR (~$55.000)
-Feature film, TV film, feature-length documentary film and animated film intended for broadcasting, that last at least 70 minutes
-TV series containing at least three episodes not shorter than 40 minutes;
-Documentary programmes not shorter that 40 minutes
-Post-production or VFX for any of the abovementioned formats
The following are considered Qualifying Expenditure towards the incentive:
-Costs pertaining to the production of an audiovisual work that have occurred and that have been disbursed to legal or natural entities in the territory of the Republic of Serbia. These include purchased goods and provided services, use of locations, crew payments and royalties to individuals who are residents of the Republic of Serbia or to foreigners who are legally residing for at least a year in the territory of the Republic of Serbia, in accordance with the regulations of the Republic of Serbia;
-Incurred costs pertaining to the use of goods, ie. leasing of movables and immovables may be recognised only if the goods, and/or movables and immovables, are the property of legal or natural entities, in the territory of the Republic of Serbia;
-The eligible costs include gross sums where there are social benefits, insurance, authorship or other types of taxes included in the calculation of costs.
The following costs do not qualify for the incentive:
There is no cap per project. Every year the Serbian government will allocate funds for the incentive programme. The budget allocated for 2020 is 750 million dinars (EUR 6,3 million or $7 million). Projects that surpass amount of annual budget allocated for this fiscal year may be transferred into the next year.
The call for applications is open all year. The applicant must be a Serbian registered company acting on behalf of the investor in the project or SPV company setup for the production in Serbia. The entity applies for the incentive programme to the government organization Film Center Serbia, providing an estimated budget, a production schedule together with a completed application form and other required documents (see list below).
The application can be submitted anytime in the course of the production in question.
Decision and Contracting
The Committee will review the application documents and if approved, the Ministry of Economy will sign a contract with the applicant.
Request for Final Payment
Within 45 days from the completion of production the applicant needs to conduct an independent audit and submit a Request for Payment. The Committee will process the request confirming that audit report, production reports and financial information are valid. The rebate amount will be released within 60 days of the Committee final approval to a designated Treasury account accessible by the Applicant.
Projects are not allowed to bundle, except in case of TV commercials where investor is allowed to bundle projects with an incentive pay-out cap of maximum 800.000 EUR in a period of 3 years. In another words investor in TVCs has a ceiling of 3,2 million EUR for local expenditure within 3 years.
Serbia has a general VAT rate of 20% on all goods and services, except hotels and other accommodation, basic food groups, utility services use reduced VAT rate of 10%.
VAT is NOT considered qualified Serbian spend.