Screen Producers Ireland (SPI) has called on theGovernment to institute changes to benefit the industry in the forthcomingbudget for 2005.

Increased funding for the Irish Film Board, removal ofthe cap on investment in feature film through Section 481, continuousexamination of the film investment tax incentive schemes offered in othercountries, the setting up of a fund to support Irish language producers andextra funding to Irish language broadcaster TG4 are among SPI's demands. Thebudget is announced by the government in the first week in December.

According to SPI Director, Malcolm Byrne, such measuresare essential if the industry is to develop in the next year. "Theforthcoming budget offers the Government the chance to make a real differenceto the film production industry in Ireland."

"Despite the large amount of revenue the Film Boardhelps bring into the country every year their level of resourcing is less thana quarter of that of their counterparts in Denmark, who operate in a similarsized territory. If the board is tocontinue its good work it needs an increase of about Euros 2m per year.Otherwise the Irish film industry will lose out," Mr. Byrne said.

On the question of the tax incentive, Section 481, SPI isurging vigilance on the Government's part so that Ireland adapts to thechanging international market and retains its competitive edge as a locationfor feature film production.

"We also need to remove the cap on investment infeature films as indicated in the Price Waterhouse Coopers Report 2003. At the very least we need to be ascompetitive as the UK where the cap is set at Euros 30m", Byrne added.