Film in Malaysia Incentive (FIMI) offers 35% cash rebate
The Film in Malaysia Incentive (FIMI) has been increased. The country’s core 30% incentive can be boosted by an additional 5% cash rebate if projects pass a cultural test. A minimum of MYR5 million (around EUR1.086 million) must be spent on production work, or production and post-production work combined, in order to receive the rebate. Qualifying expenditure includes local and foreign equipment hires as well as transport and hotel costs in Malaysia.
“The scope of what is considered qualifying expenditure makes the incentive scheme stand out,” says Rashid Karim, CEO of Iskandar Malaysia Studios. "Low general costs in the country will work alongside the new improvements to the incentive scheme, capturing how Malaysia is an accessible, film-friendly environment for incoming productions.”
The new boost emphasises the country’s status as a competitive filmmaking destination, creating one of the best production incentives in South East Asia. Projects that have been awarded the FIMI in recent years include: Skyfire, Strike Back Season 7, Edge of the World, Singapore Grip, Crazy Rich Asians and 6 Underground.
“Malaysia offers diverse locations ranging from stunning tropical beaches and the oldest rainforests on the planet to the glittering modern cityscapes of Kuala Lumpur and the charm of UNESCO world heritage cities like Georgetown and Melaka,” highlights producer Bill Donovan from production service company Biscuit Films. “Add the world-class film studios complete with its backlot and deep-water paddock tanks - as well as an average of twelve hours of daylight all year round - and the picture becomes clear.”
Qualifying Malaysian Production Expenditure, or QMPE, is the incentive’s key criteria. The basis for calculating QPME is connected to the amount actually spent and paid by the application producer company on goods, services, and land (or locations used) in Malaysia.
If a business is both located in Malaysia and registered as a Malaysian company at the time when a service is provided, then the services provided by this company fall under QMPE. When a service provider’s contract does not distinguish between the services provided in and outside Malaysia, then apportionment calculations may be utilised too.
Legal expenses incurred by Malaysian law firms count as QMPE alongside reasonable insurance policies. Travel costs within (but not beyond) Malaysia that relate to production activity also qualify, and so do all freight travel costs within Malaysia that are necessary for the making of the production. More information about FIMI is available online.
Images courtesy of Iskandar Malaysia Studios
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