UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown, this week visiting Israel, has announced plans for a UK-Israel film co-production treaty. Brown and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said they would work together to develop the treaty to encourage closer ties between the UK and Israeli film industries.
Negotiations will start in the coming months. A treaty would help UK and Israeli film-makers to share talent and resources - and more crucially, it would allow Israeli film-makers to more easily make films in the UK and access the new UK film tax incentive.
UK Film Minister Margaret Hodge said: 'Film-making has always been an international industry. To compete on a world stage, it's essential that UK film makers have the best possible opportunities to pool talent and expertise and we hope for a treaty that will benefit both countries, and film viewers.'
The UK has come under fire since January 2007, when new legislation made it harder for co-productions with other countries to qualify for film tax breaks in Britain. Notably, co-productions dropped by 44% to 28 in 2007, compared with 53 the previous year.
The UK already has co-production treaties with Australia, Canada, France, New Zealand, South Africa and Jamaica. A treaty with India, touted since 2003, is still awaiting ratification.
As previously reported, treaty negotiations are ongoing with Morocco and China.