Film lobby group, the European Film Companies Alliance (EFCA) has taken issue with a key European Commission communication on state aid schemes for cinema.

The Commission proposal was published last week and recommended capping state aid to 50% of a film's production budget, arguing that this would stimulate the growth of the private film sector. However, the communication said that "difficult and low budget" films should be excluded from this limit.

EFCA says that if the recommendations were to be adopted by the EC, they would undermine the European film industry's ability to compete globally.

EFCA also says that the EC recommendation contradicts the policy objective of the EC's Media Plus programme and other incentives such as access to the EIB (European Investment Bank) to support and develop the film industry as a whole.

"Film professionals have yet to find out what is an easy film - the criteria are unworkable", said Rasmus Ramstad, CEO of Svensk Filmindustri.

The recommendation will be debated by EU member states at the next Culture Council on today (Nov 5) in Brussels.

The EC believes that limiting aid for more commercial films will encourage the private sector to invest more.

EFCA was founded in 1995 and represents the interests of many European film companies, including CLT-Ufa, FilmFour, Pathe, StudioCanal and Zentropa.