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PRODUCTION / FUNDING UK

The UK launches a £500 million insurance fund for audiovisual production

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- The fund will help British film and television companies currently unable to get insurance coverage to restart production activities

The UK launches a £500 million insurance fund for audiovisual production
UK Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Oliver Dowden

At the end of July, the British government announced the creation of a new £500 million insurance fund which will help firms unable to get insurance coverage to restart productions. Shoots were forced to shut down in March and have been slowly resuming since May, but many insurance companies stopped providing coverage owing to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The government stepped in and confirmed that the new insurance fund will be available to all productions made by outfits where at least 50% of the budget is spent in the country. The fund is estimated to cover over 70% of Britain's film and television production market.

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Speaking about the initiative, UK's Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Oliver Dowden said: “From award-winning dramas, to iconic comedies and revered documentaries, the UK makes the films and TV shows the world can’t wait to watch. Today’s announcement means more clapperboards snapping into action”.

Meanwhile, BFI's CEO Ben Roberts added: “The issue of securing coronavirus-related insurance quickly emerged as the biggest hurdle for independent producers”, who described the new fund as “really great news for our production business, jobs and for the economy”.

The provision comes after a long discussion and was well received by the industry. Hopefully, it will be helpful to compensate — at least partially — for the severe losses recorded by the British audiovisual sector.

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