Odisha launches India’s most comprehensive Film Policy to attract investments and boost tourism

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Odisha launches India’s most comprehensive Film Policy to attract investments and boost tourism

Kolkata, February 28, 2019: The Government of Odisha has promulgated Odisha State Film Policy, 2019 to create a conducive ecosystem for production of films in the State. The State intends to be a leader in the development of the film sector. The policy will promote quality Odia films, facilitate film tourism in the State, establish Odisha as a destination for film shooting and improve screen density in Odisha. This policy has been formulated in consultation with stakeholders including film industry associations, experts from film fraternity, Government departments & agencies.

To enhance the ease of filming and facilitate the development of related institutions, the Odisha State Film Policy, 2019 proposes to implement a Single Window Approval Process for shooting of films in Odisha. It is proposed that all proposals for Film cities, multiplexes and cinema halls shall be facilitated through the Government of Odisha – Single Window for Investor Facilitation and Tracking (GO-SWIFT) portal. GO-SWIFT has set a record by receiving 600 investment proposals from across the country within 14 months of its launch at the rate of almost 2 proposals per working day.  

Commenting on the development, Shri Sanjeev Chopra, Principal Secretary, Industries Department, Government of Odishasaid, “Odisha intends to be a leader in the development of the film sector, by creating a conducive ecosystem for production of films in the State. The development of this sector will not only help in the growth of the State’s economy, but also act as an important medium to boost tourism through promotion of its rich cultural heritage, history, architecture, tourist destinations and varied ethnicity. In order to achieve this goal, the Government of Odisha promulgated the Odisha State Film Policy 2019 on Feb 26. It is by far the most comprehensive and attractive film policy in India which aims at facilitating development of the film sector through creation of an appropriate framework of policy and infrastructure.”

To encourage filmmakers to shoot in Odisha, a subsidy up to INR 2.5 crore shall be provided to English/ Hindi/ International/ other language films, based on the amount of screen time in these films ‘promoting Odisha, its culture, heritage, tourist destinations, etc.’ and toOdia films which convey ‘aesthetic excellence, high technical standards and social relevance’. Up to two additionaleligible films by the same filmmakers shall be provided with a subsidy up to INR 4 crore.

The State Government shall provide an assistance of INR 10 crore to the first three big budget Hindi or International language films, which have a minimum budget of INR 50 crore and with minimum of 10% of their screen time dedicated towards ‘promoting Odisha, its culture, heritage, tourist destinations, etc.’. Besidesthe policy also provides concession to filmmakers on their stay during shooting in Odisha. Scrutinizing committees are proposed to be set up to undertake necessary due diligence and facilitate various approvals.

The policy aims to develop Kalinga Studio with world-class infrastructure. It also focuses on the development of film cities, cinema halls and multiplexes in the State through appropriate incentives. These incentives include capital investment subsidy, interest subsidy, stamp duty exemption, reimbursement of land conversion charges, reimbursement of SGST, exemption in electricity duty, environmental protection infrastructure subsidy and support for upgradation of screening infrastructure. The first film city project in Odisha shall be eligible for a capital investment subsidy up to INR 30 crore.  Land for film cities, cinema halls and multiplexes shall be allotted at concessional rates as per the provision of Industrial Policy Resolution 2015 or as per the guidelines to be fixed by the State Government from time to time. These measures are expected to contribute significantly towards building a conducive ecosystem for the sector.

To encourage quality training of the youth in courses related to Film making, the policy proposes one-time scholarship to eligible students. It also proposes to strengthen the Biju Patnaik Film and Television Institute of Odisha (BPFTIO) by upgrading it into a Degree level institution and introducing additional courses. To promote the industry, an International Film Festival is proposed to be organized at Bhubaneswar each year. The policy proposes to encourage Odia films through Annual Awards. Upgradation of the film archive and setting up of a film library have also been proposed in the policy.

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