Tuesday, 19 November 2019

Ceisteanna (680)

Jack Chambers

Ceist:

680. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht her views on the number of hours of original Irish content that has been produced by Irish independent production companies over the past 11 years for RTÉ has halved; the impact this has had on the sustainability and growth of the independent production sector here; the actions she has taken to address the issue; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [47410/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Culture)

Legislation sets out RTÉ’s statutory obligations in respect to the commissioning of television and radio programmes from the independent production sector is the responsibility of my colleague the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and the Environment and queries in this regard are more appropriately addressed to him.

For my part, as set out in the Audiovisual Action Plan, my Department is focused on implementing initiatives that will sustain and grow the audiovisual industry – including the independent production sector, boosting employment and delivering on the ambition of making Ireland a global hub for the production of film, TV drama and animation.

Government policy also supports the sector through Screen Ireland which has a statutory remit to assist and encourage the making of film in the State and the development of a film industry in Ireland. In that role, Screen Ireland also supports the development and production of original Irish drama, comedy, documentary and children’s animation for the independent production sector in Ireland. In its 2020 funding allocation, I have secured an additional €1 million for Screen Ireland, demonstrating this Government’s continuing support for the Irish creative screen industries.

In addition, this year has seen significant strides made on implementation of key aspects of the Audiovisual Action Plan which should benefit all involved in the Irish audiovisual sector. Such measures include: extending the availability of the section 481 tax credit to 2024; revision of the section 481 Regulations, signing of the revised Council of Europe Convention on Cinematographic Co-production, introduction of the Regional Film Development Uplift and the development of new skills development courses and enhanced training and skills development opportunities as part of section 481 revisions.