Australia Strikes Co-Production Treaty With Malaysia

Australia has signed its eleventh bilateral co-production treaty for the film and TV industries.

The bilateral deal with Malaysia is understood to have been inked by the federal government on the sidelines of the recent multi-lateral trade talks, known as the Trans Pacific Partnership.

“This arrangement with Malaysia presents an opportunity to build on growing co-production opportunities in our region,” said Screen Producers Association CEO Matthew Deaner in a statement.

Film regulatory and funding body Screen Australia, says that the country had ten prior treaties with countries including Singapore, China, Canada, Germany and South Korea. It said that negotiations were ongoing with India and Denmark, and that the government is also renegotiating the existing treaty with the United Kingdom.
SPA said that the TPP had also helped Australian film and TV industries.

“We have achieved a terrific outcome for Australia’s screen industry with Australia’s negotiation team having been able to preserve our existing rights with regard to spectrum management and licensing of broadcasting services, transmission quotas for local content on free to air and radio broadcasting services, the provision of subsidies and grants for investment or the use of taxation measures in Australian cultural activity and our international co-production program,” said Deaner.

“And critically, in the context of the TPP, Australia has retained the capacity to make interventions it considers appropriate and necessary in the emerging connected, online and mobile digital world to ensure the availability of Australian content to Australian audiences. Effectively a “carve-out” for Australian content in this emerging space.  In so doing, Australia has avoided extending the more prescriptive outcome of the Australia – United States FTA (AUSFTA) in this area to additional trading partners.”

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