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IRIS 2014-1:1/12

Switzerland

New Agreement on Cinematographic Coproduction with Luxembourg

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Patrice Aubry

RTS Radio Télévision Suisse (Geneva)

As part of the bilateral discussions held during the 64th Cannes Festival, Switzerland and Luxembourg signed a new agreement on cinematographic coproduction on 15 May 2011. The agreement, which entered into force on 1 August 2013, provides an official framework for audiovisual projects involving Swiss and Luxembourgish partners. It also aims to encourage economic and cultural exchanges between the two countries. The agreement is in addition to the treaties concluded by Switzerland with France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Belgium and Canada to promote the production of audiovisual projects by making it possible to gather funds on an international scale.

The agreement between Switzerland and Luxembourg makes it possible to recognise cinematographic coproductions in any genre (fiction, documentary, animation) with financing shares of between 20 and 80% of the final cost of the work and proportionate technical and artistic contributions. The agreement also recognises cofinanced films, on condition that the minority financial participation is no more than 10% of total production costs, that the project is carried out on the territory of one of the two States parties, and that both States parties support the film’s production by allocating selective financial aid.

In order to be able to take advantage of the coproduction agreement, a cinematographic work must obtain recognition from the competent authorities of both States within one month of completing filming. Applications for recognition should be sent to the competent authorities of both countries (in Switzerland, the Federal Culture Office (Office Fédéral de la Culture) before filming starts. Coproduced films must be made by production companies with good technical and financial organisation that are also able to demonstrate recognised professional experience. In addition, indoor filming should be carried out for preference in studios established on the territory of one of the two States parties. Filming carried out in a natural environment may nevertheless be undertaken on the territory of a member state of the European Union, a member State of the European Free-Trade Association (EFTA), or any other State participating in the coproduction.

The coproductions recognised by the new agreement between Switzerland and Luxembourg automatically have the benefit of the advantages granted in each of the States parties as a result of provisions concerning the cinematographic industry. The recognition of a film may, however, be dependent on conditions and charges in order to ensure compliance with the provisions of the coproduction agreement. Switzerland and Luxembourg also undertake to promote cultural diversity, particularly through education programmes and participation in film festivals. They also undertake to promote the reciprocal distribution and promotion of the two countries’ cinematographic works.

References
Accord de coproduction entre la Suisse et le Luxembourg du 15 mai 2011 FR
 http://merlin.obs.coe.int/redirect.php?id=16824
 
  Coproduction agreement of 15 May 2011 between Switzerland and Luxembourg   DE
 http://merlin.obs.coe.int/redirect.php?id=16825