The shortlisted films are:
4 Months, 3 Weeks, 2 Days (Romania) Cristian Mungiu
Alexandra (Russia) Alexander Sokurov
The Band's Visit (Israel) Eran Colirin
Control (UK) Anton Corbijn
The Diving Bell And The Butterfly (France) Julian Schnabel
Edge Of Heaven (Germany) Fatih Akin
Import/Export (Austria) Ulrich Seidl
Persepolis (France) Marjane Satrapi & Vincent Paronnaud
Secret Sunshine (Korea) Lee Chang-dong
Silent Light (Mexico) Carlos Reygadas
The prize, now in its fourth year, has become a key predictor of foreign films which are set to for success in the year's awards season.
Last year's winner was Pedro Almodovar's Volver and its star Penelope Cruz accepted the award.
Previous winners were Mrs Henderson Presents in 2005 and The Motorcycle Diaries and The Sea Inside in 2004.
A panel of international judges consisting of critics, festival directors and impartial executives chose the shortlist of films.
Chair of the panel was Screen's US editor Mike Goodridge, with the other 14 judges consisting of Teresa Cavina, Dan Fainaru, Manuel Grosso, Nicole Guillemet, Jim Hamilton, Sandra Hebron, Allan Hunter, Tobias Kniebe, Derek Malcolm, Richard Moore, Despina Mouzaki, Jacob Neiiendam, Jonathan Romney and Ilda Santiago.