Argentine Gov't Boosts Film Sector to Industry Standards

President Kirchner announced the creation of an Audiovisual Pole in Buenos Aires and raised the fund limit for local productions.

BUENOS AIRES – Argentine President Cristina Kirchner signed yesterday a series of decrees that categorizes the audiovisual sector as a “cultural industry”, an old demand from the film sector which can now benefit from industry legislation and tax regulations.

“Audiovisual contents must be regarded as one of the country’s main industries, because they also transmit Argentine culture and values”, said Kirchner in her speech at the Bicentennial Museum in Buenos Aires. “We pass on culture, ideals, and values through our artists, directors, and film crews”.

Kirchner, who pointed out Argentina is "the fourth largest exporter of audiovisual contents and formats in the world," also announced the creation of a hub for audiovisual development in Demarchi Island, a vacant 400,000 sq ft industrial borough located by the shore of the Rio de la Plata in Buenos Aires. The initial plan contemplates a 5 million pesos ($1.08 million) investment and a tender to have urban developers rebuilding the area, in order to enable the relocation of studios, sound stages, production companies, film training institutions, and theaters.

According to the President, the ANSES (Social Security Administration Agency) will be in charge of managing the process. The public tender will be put out in 30 days, and the development of the “Audiovisual Pole” will be carried out by a mixed venture between ANSES, the Secretary of Communications, and private real estate capitals.

The second decree signed by Kirchner raises the limit of state funding to local big-budget productions from 3.5 to 5.5 million pesos (USD 1.2 M), a move that aims to "ensure that Argentine film productions are able to compete in the local market and project themselves abroad”.  The funds are aimed to films selected by Argentina’s Film Institute that have a theatrical commercial release.