U.K. Government Extends Tax Relief to Theater Productions

Live performances of plays, musicals, operas, ballet and dance to benefit

LONDON — The U.K.’s Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, has extended tax relief to live theater productions, including plays, musicals, operas, ballet and dance. He also confirmed changes to film tax relief announced in the autumn.

Osborne, who is in charge of the country’s finances and was announcing the annual budget, said the government will introduce a theater tax relief at 25% for regional touring productions, and 20% for other productions, with effect from Sept. 1. A consultation on the relief will be launched shortly.

Osborne said: “And we’re supporting our creative industries too. The European Commission has today approved the extension of our film tax credit — and I will apply the same successful approach to theater, especially regional theater. From this September there will be a 20% tax relief for qualifying productions, and 25% for regional touring.”

As announced in the autumn, the government has made changes to film tax relief. It will make tax relief available at 25% on the first £20 million ($33.2 million) of qualifying production expenditure, and 20% thereafter, for small and large budget films from April. The government will also reduce the minimum U.K. expenditure requirement from 25% to 10%.

The government has also extended video games tax relief to goods and services provided from within the European Economic Area, which includes the European Union states as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.

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