Adrian Loveridge, Peach and Quiet

The Adrian Loveridge Column – Enticing Film Production Companies With Tax concessions and Related

Adrian Loveridge

Adrian Loveridge

When I look at my near three decades living on Barbados, it is difficult not to applaud the progress of our fledgling film industry and the key players who have thought past our tiny geographically size and produced world class moving images. However at the same time, I wonder if as a tourism driven economy we have taken maximum advantage and opportunity to increase arrival numbers, average stay and equally important, overall visitor spend through this medium.

What prompted current thoughts was the airing of a new series of the historical Poldark series which is set in the scenically spectacular English south western county of Cornwall.

It has been estimated that around 10 million people in the UK each Sunday night watched the first series. As a result there was a noticeable spike in Cornwall’s visitor numbers with half of those who took part in a tourism survey saying that they had watched the series and a fifth confessed it had actually prompted their visit. Imagine exposing Barbados to 10 million captive viewers every week and the positive effect it could have on all sectors of our tourism sector with a trickledown benefit to all sorts of other goods, services and potential property purchases.

Knowing that several countries offer enticing tax concessions, with Hollywood blockbusters like the Pirates of the Caribbean being a classical example, I ran the phrase ‘film tax concessions Barbados’ through GOOGLE. One of the several location/facilitation entities that popped up stated ‘Barbados has no official backed film commission to liaise with foreign film productions. This means there are no official tax breaks or funding options for filmmakers at present’.

Yet I understand that a Film Commission of Barbados was formed in 2015 which currently has a very limited website presence outlining details of various incentives that may be obtained.

Compare this to one of our regional neighbours with similar climatic conditions, the Dominican Republic. They offer 25 per cent freely transferable tax credit on all qualifying local spend subject to a minimum of US$500,000, 18 per cent VAT and customs duties exemption of temporary imports on eligible goods, among several other incentives. Clearly their Government must consider these concessions cost-effective, otherwise why would they be made available.

To add to the confusion, there is also a Facebook Page under ‘Barbados Film Commission’ which has so far attracted 5 ‘likes’ and has not been updated since 11th August 2013.

Surely, if our Government is serious about attracting this largely high spending niche market business, resources, both financial and human have to be allocated to ensure that we, as a possible beneficial destination can maximise the potential. Years ago I recall being in Marigot on French side of St. Martin during the production of Speed 2 and being frankly amazed at the knock-on effect this had on the entire island economy.

‘We’ have to understand that we are competing with a myriad of other possible choices all offering near perfect filming conditions, but at a substantially lower overall operating cost.

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31 Comments on “The Adrian Loveridge Column – Enticing Film Production Companies With Tax concessions and Related”

  1. David September 19, 2016 at 6:05 PM #

    We have written extensively on this matter but the local Creatives are myopic in focus therefore the mediocre effort to penetrate a very lucrative market is just that, mediocre.

    Like

  2. abajanhowe September 19, 2016 at 9:20 PM #

    Most of our tourism business developers are so nearsighted that they will ignore a real chance to promote the Island to it’s fullest potential. For that to reasonably happen money has to be passed other than for the real purposes that the Tourism industry is using the funds provided for such a purpose.

    The film industry although not having the funds there is a real potential in what Loveridge is suggesting. Maybe some official will understand this and go after the lucrative markets with vigorous promotions without bribes and corruption.

    Like

  3. David September 19, 2016 at 10:18 PM #

    @DD

       
     
    David,
     
    This should clarify the Air Canada September/October flights.
     
    Good news from WestJet.
     
    Adrian
     
     
    Sent: Monday, September 19, 2016 8:25 AM
    To: Undisclosed recipients:
    Subject: Airlift Update

     

    Colleagues / Partners:

     

    I hope you are all well!

     

    I am pleased to formally advise of the intention of WestJet to increase capacity to Barbados during the coming winter season.  The carrier will maintain the schedule of four (4) weekly flights (Monday; Wednesday; Friday; Saturday) but we will benefit from upgraded equipment (737-800 / 168 pax) for three (3) of the days (Wednesday; Friday; Saturday) and maintain the 737-700 (130 pax) on Mondays.  These changes are scheduled to come into effect in November 2016

     

    The table below highlights the seat comparisons YOY for the November  – April period.  

     

    MONTH

    WINTER 15/16

    WINTER 16/17

    ABS Change

    % Change

    November

    2,210

    2,704

    494

    22.4

    December

    2,248

    2,872

    624

    27.8

    January

    2,416

    2,666

    250

    10.3

    February

    2,210

    2,536

    326

    14.8

    March

    2,210

    2,872

    662

    30.0

    April

    2,416

    2,704

    288

    11.9

     

     

     

     

     

     

    13,710

    16,354

    2,644

    19.3

     

    Be reminded that during September and early October, Air Canada has suspended service on the following dates:

    September 13; 18; 20; 25; 27.

    October 2; 4; 9.

     

    Thanks for your continued support and best wishes for the week ahead!

     

    Regards:

     

    Peter Mayers

    Director

     

     

    Visit our new website: http://www.visitbarbados.org

     

    110 Sheppard Avenue East

    Suite 205

    North York, ON M2N 6Y8

    Canada

    PBX: 416 214 9880 | Fax: 416 214 9882

    Email: peterm@visitbarbados.org
     

     

    Like

  4. Due Diligence September 19, 2016 at 11:55 PM #

    Thanks David

    Like

  5. Artaxerxes September 20, 2016 at 8:16 AM #

    I attempted to comment on the LIAT issue, but was a bit hesitant in doing so. However, although LIAT has been experiencing problems with its flight schedules, which has been causing delays or flights to be cancelled, I was taken aback by the “scathing criticisms” of the airline by Grenada’s Tourism Minister Dr Clariste Modeste-Curwen, and under circumstances whereby Grenada is unwilling to invest in LIAT.

    Modeste said she recently had to endure a 3 hour delay while travelling to St. Lucia on official government business.

    It is important to note that Grenada’s PM Mitchell said Grenada is not prepared to invest in the regional airline, unless there is an improvement in its management. Yet, he wants Barbadian, Vincentian, Antiguan and Dominican tax payers to finance this effort, while Grenada benefits in the form of taxation, landing fees and inter-regional visitors, without investing $1.

    In an interview by Loop News on February 9, 2016, Donville Inniss expressed the view that “governments of some countries in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) and have taken to task for reaping the benefits of LIAT and intra-regional travel without footing the bill or helping the situation.”

    Inniss said: “One of my peeves is that there is a HEAVY DEPENDENCE on LIAT but there are some OECS countries that BENEFIT tremendously from LIAT and do not CONTRIBUTE to LIAT directly.”

    “So they’re really as far as I am concerned, taking ADVANTAGE of Barbados in the sense that we are 49 per cent shareholders at LIAT, pay the bulk of the bills associated with LIAT, and as far as I’m concerned, other countries need to step up and make a more meaningful contribution to LIAT.”

    This is one occasion I have to agree with Inniss.

    Like

  6. Artaxerxes September 20, 2016 at 8:21 AM #

    *and have taken them to task…….

    Like

  7. ac September 20, 2016 at 8:39 AM #

    Well..Well..

    Like

  8. David September 20, 2016 at 9:23 AM #

    @Artax

    Thought you would have also commented on the views expressed this week by Minister Sealy in reaction to St. Lucia’s PM that the region needs to create more travel options for regional travel. His comment is interesting in the context that Barbados is the majority shareholder in LIAT AND Chastenet like Gonzales, Mitchell and others not to contribute to LIAT.

    Like

  9. Artaxerxes September 20, 2016 at 9:49 AM #

    Unfortunately, rather than seek viable alternatives that would make LIAT efficient and profitable, Antigua & Barbuda’s PM Gaston Browne is more interested in acquiring majority shares and seems to be playing politics with the air-line’s situation.

    A&B’s Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance, Senator Lennox Weston, who is also one of the three government representatives on the airline’s board, said in February 2015 that attaining majority shares in the airline is the only way that A&B can guarantee that its interests in LIAT are protected.

    So far, Browne has resisted any attempts made to restructure LIAT’s management and operation systems.

    Recently, LIAT requested financial assistance from St. Vincent, in the sum of EC$810,000, which would be used to assist with the airline’s operations.

    However, St. Vincent’s PM Gonsalves said his government would “not inject any more funds into the cash-strapped regional carrier, LIAT, until the airline improves its services to the island.”

    “In its September 4 letter to Diane Shurland, LIAT’s Antigua-based legal counsel, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of National Security in Kingstown, Godfred Pompey, wrote “it is time for LIAT to get its act and attitude towards the travelling public of St Vincent and the Grenadines together.” [Jamaica Observer, September 15, 2016]

    Obviously, in his quest to acquire majority shares, Browne saw this development as an opportunity by which to achieve his objective. He said Antigua is willing to purchase St. Vincent’s shares, if that island decides not to make any further investment in LIAT.

    It is unfair for Barbadian tax payers to hold the burden of LIAT, while islands such as Anguilla, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Martinique and St. Maarten do offer any financial assistance to the air-line, but want to achieve maximum benefits/profits from inter-regional travel.

    Like

  10. David September 20, 2016 at 9:54 AM #

    @Adrian

    You have read the following report?

    http://www.caribbean360.com/news/jamaica_news/jamaica-caribbeans-leading-destination?utm_source=Caribbean360%20Newsletters&utm_campaign=de9ceac48a-Vol_11_Issue_009_Travel9_20_2016&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_350247989a-de9ceac48a-39425505

    Jamaica makes an interesting case study. Tourism continues to do well. It continues to maintain a strong brand. It has an enviable sports program.

    YET the economy s struggling and there is an exodus of low skilled Jamaicans especially.

    Like

  11. Artaxerxes September 20, 2016 at 10:26 AM #

    Recall the Thirty-Seventh Regular Caribbean Community (CARICOM) summit was held in Georgetown, Guyana from Friday 1 to Wednesday 6 July, 2016.

    During an interview at the summit, St. Lucian Prime Minister Allen Chastanet told reporters that LIAT needed to operate “in the context of the private sector”.

    “I have made my position very clear that LIAT needs to be liberalized. LIAT needs to operate in the context of the private sector and I am not convinced that a monopoly in transportation is going to work,” Chastanet, a long time critic of LIAT, said. [Barbados Today, July 7, 2016]

    However, in response, MoT Richard Sealy commented that “the airline had “a social responsibility” and if it were to operate as a business a number of Caribbean economies would collapse.”

    Interestingly, it seems as though Sealy’s opinions on this issue (in September 2016) has changed significantly from the opinions he held in July 2016.

    As it relates to competition creating an environment for cheaper airfares, we need to take “air taxes” of individual islands into consideration, as well as the structure of the fare system, before “jumping on that band-wagon.”

    The airfare to St. Vincent form October 3 to 7, 2016, for example, is BD$323.66. The airfare from Barbados is $90.00 + $99.66 (taxes) = $189.66.

    From St. Vincent to Barbados, the fare is $60.00 + $74.00 (taxes) = $134.00.

    If new airlines are introduced into the region, would Caribbean islands be willing to reduce their taxes, as they seem unwilling to do for LIAT?

    Like

  12. Due Diligence September 20, 2016 at 11:04 AM #

    Adrian

    “Be reminded that during September and early October, Air Canada has suspended service on the following dates:

    September 13; 18; 20; 25; 27.
    October 2; 4; 9.”

    An explanation of the suspend service would have been helpful.

    Like

  13. David September 20, 2016 at 11:07 AM #

    All we are hearing is alotta talk from these buffoons. Sorry Dennis Johnson, we know your aversion to labeling people but sometimes you have to call a spade a spade, it is better than brandishing a gun or throwing a bucket. In fact it is no different to what you did to Arthur last week…lol.

    Can you imagine we had to listen to Prime Gonzales admit to that fact the management has not carried out a Board directive to shift planes (Hub) to Barbados? Tell us we did not hear correctly.

    Like

  14. millertheannunaki September 20, 2016 at 7:00 PM #

    @ Artaxerxes September 20, 2016 at 8:16 AM
    Inniss said: “One of my peeves is that there is a HEAVY DEPENDENCE on LIAT but there are some OECS countries that BENEFIT tremendously from LIAT and do not CONTRIBUTE to LIAT directly.”
    “So they’re really as far as I am concerned, taking ADVANTAGE of Barbados in the sense that we are 49 per cent shareholders at LIAT, pay the bulk of the bills associated with LIAT, and as far as I’m concerned, other countries need to step up and make a more meaningful contribution to LIAT.”
    This is one occasion I have to agree with Inniss.

    Agree with him on what?

    Dropping a load of verbal bullshit in the public domain? Can’t you see the man is just one puffed-up talkative buffoon of hot air? He is just a maestro of All Talk and No Action.
    Isn’t he the same man who promised a brand new spanking QEH (aka that the Hospital for the New Republic) with only things missing were the exact location and its source of funding?

    How come Barbados being the largest shareholder is unable to call the shots as far as the management and future direction is concerned? What kind of majority owner of a business would tolerate such crap and financial hemorrhaging?

    Who is the overly garrulous Minister going to blame (as is the wont of his other Cabinet colleagues) on this failure to restructure and relocate LIAT? Is it going be PM Browne or Chastanet or just its lowly CEO?

    Don’t you think it’s high time the Barbados government show some kind of strong leadership in order to save the whole project called LIAT or just sell it to the Antiguans for what it’s worth?

    Like

  15. Artaxerxes September 20, 2016 at 8:49 PM #

    millertheannunaki September 20, 2016 at 7:00 PM #

    “Don’t you think it’s high time the Barbados government show some kind of strong leadership in order to save the whole project called LIAT or just sell it to the Antiguans for what it’s worth?”

    @ millertheannunaki

    I agree with your above comments, relative to the Barbados government selling its shares in LIAT to Antigua for what it’s worth (thereby enabling PM Gaston Browne to achieve his objective of Antigua owning the majority shares in the airline).

    Gaston Browne is playing politics with LIAT similarly to how he intends to play politics in West Indies cricket. LIAT’s headquarters remaining in Antigua is politically beneficial to Browne, in that he is attempting to ensure Antiguans remain employed, even if such is financially detrimental to the regional carrier.

    Recently, the Antiguan government and WICB entered in a joint venture to acquire Stanford Cricket Ground, Sticky Wicket and other amenities valued at US$6M. As a result, early in 2017, the WICB’s headquarters will relocate from St. John’s to that cricket ground, which is located in Coolidge, just above the airport.

    However, I was happy to read in the September 17, 2016 edition of the “Caribbean News Service [CNS]” that:

    “Grenada, the latest country to call out LIAT for its appallingly low customer service, will be the first one to suffer as a result of a route restructuring exercise announced by the airline.”

    http://caribbeannewsservice.com/now/grenada-to-feel-the-pinch-as-liat-cuts-sectors/

    Like

  16. Artaxerxes September 20, 2016 at 8:57 PM #

    David BU mentioned “St. Lucia’s PM (suggested) the region needs to create more travel options for regional travel.”

    The following excerpts were taken from the September 20, 2016 edition of the Caribbean News Service [CNS]:

    CASTRIES, St. Lucia, Sep 20 2016 – St. Lucia is MOVING to HAVE the Trinidad-based CARIBBEAN AIRLINES (CAL) as its NATIONAL CARRIER, Prime Minister Allen Chastanet has said.

    Speaking at a news conference on the state-owned National Television Network (NTN) on Monday night, Chastanet said that having CAL serve as the national carrier may be the best option for the island given the many issues facing air transport in the region.

    “This means that Caribbean Airlines would now be able to fly between St. Lucia and Barbados and Trinidad and even go to Puerto Rico and other places,” he told reporters.

    The former tourism minister, a critic of the Antigua-based regional airline LIAT, reiterated early statements that the airline, whose major shareholders are the governments of Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica and St. Vincent and the Grenadines, cannot solve all of the transportation needs of the region.

    He said Castries would not provide any financial assistance to the cash-strapped airline until it is restructured.

    Prime Minister Chastanet was also critical of the Eastern Caribbean Civil Aviation Authority (ECCAA) saying that it has been reluctant to allow other airlines to operate within the sub-region.

    “I am convinced that ECCAA cannot be fixed,” Chastanet told television viewers, adding that he would like to move St. Lucia from the Antigua-based ECCAA that was established in 2003.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Very interesting developments, also proving CARICOM isn’t anything more than a talk shop.

    Like

  17. Harry September 21, 2016 at 5:06 AM #

    ON A DAY WHEN THE TEMPERATURE in Barbados topped 88 degrees Fahrenheit (31 degrees Celsius), an Italian and a Canadian were putting the finishing touches on an ice-skating rink that should open here in just over a week –

    The two foreigners who realized their creative investment must be commended as it adds to attractions for residents and tourists. The venture obviously was a closely guarded secret if word had gotten out protests from the BU inspired anti foreign investment yard fowls were inevitable . Specious reasons like its on the UNESCO site and locals can no longer play dominoes under the tree in the vicinity were possible rallying cries.

    David Marxist Commisiong wouldn’t need an invitation to threaten legal action on the grounds ice skating destroys the culture of the people. The attention seeker might posit an ice rink cannot be permitted to replace old rusty bicycle rims raced by barefoot children using pieces of wood. Bizzy the crochety not in on the action to line his pockets would’ve rallied the environmentalists to curse the government for unfairing him cause he from bout here.

    The business duo have to be congratulated on a great escape from the booby traps set by the anti foreign investment crowd.

    Like

  18. Hants September 21, 2016 at 9:32 AM #

    ice-skating rink.

    http://www.nationnews.com/nationnews/news/87177/skate

    Like

  19. millertheannunaki September 21, 2016 at 10:04 AM #

    @ Harry September 21, 2016 at 5:06 AM
    “The two foreigners who realized their creative investment must be commended as it adds to attractions for residents and tourists. The venture obviously was a closely guarded secret if word had gotten out protests from the BU inspired anti foreign investment yard fowls were inevitable . Specious reasons like its on the UNESCO site and locals can no longer play dominoes under the tree in the vicinity were possible rallying cries.”

    Which Bajans in their right mind would oppose such a project as long as it is going to bring in much needed foreign exchange and widen the range of attractions available to both visitors and locals?

    The current state of the foreign reserves would suggest that the government will sell the country’s soul to the devil of the foreign dollar.
    The only precondition for the project’s proposal is that the facility should obtain the majority of its energy needs from alternative sources, primarily solar.

    Like

  20. Hants September 21, 2016 at 10:15 AM #

    @ millertheannunaki,

    The “ice” is plastic

    “rather plastic laid down to give the feel and appearance of the slippery floor usually associated with figure skating and ice hockey.”

    Like

  21. millertheannunaki September 21, 2016 at 10:32 AM #

    @ Hants September 21, 2016 at 10:15 AM

    I am aware of that. But the facility will still require energy to run its operations especially if the rink is enclosed.

    Why not try to avoid the use of fossil fuel? Is that asking too much in return for the tax concessions which the government will be expected to cede to the foreign investors?

    Like

  22. Piece Uh De Rock Yeah Right - INRI September 21, 2016 at 4:21 PM #

    I would like to make an observation on the substantive topic about enticing film productin companies to Barbados.

    Loveridge bless his soul is well intentioned but in many things is well out of his depth.

    A film production company is a specialist creature that, based on the niche that it requires for its backdrops, it will choose its locale.

    CGI can go so far and no further and when one wants to film a period piece in winter well the fact is that even the ice rink that these guys are soon to open will not cut it.

    The more expansive and abundant the landscape and the less work that is required to adjust the backdrops, the better for the film production company.

    The fact is that Barbados, in addition to its expansive garbage problem, DOES NOT HAVE THE SPECTRUM OF PERIOD PIECES, in the abundance required to justify setting up a show here.

    We are too costly and the environment does not lend itself to any beauteous forests, or abundant fauna, or flora, or beachline properties that can be “devoted” to multiple storylines.

    And de ole man ent jes talking bout it, I have had limited experience with it through a friend who was with PBS for over 30 years.

    He pointed out that seminal issue per the storyline determining the predisposition of a company to want to come to a venue.

    And please do not tell me about our underwater assets.

    Simple things like alkalinity, runoff, sediment/visibility, fish populations, thriving reefs all of those are sadly lacking in the abundance or diversity of say a Great Barrier Reef.

    Jes saying … we would have to recreate a substantive village like a plantation which would be an attraction for such period specific interests cause we ent got no other worldly desserts or winterscapes to provide for a Star Wars and we certainly don’t want to be filment Spock and NinjaMan rush through the scene with his leotards

    Like

  23. Piece Uh De Rock Yeah Right - INRI September 21, 2016 at 4:54 PM #

    hahahahaha/

    Antigua & Barbuda

    Population 92,436, size cumulative approx 600 sq. miles Land mass covered by citizens **%

    Proximity to the US etc. state of pristine assets?

    Dat is pirates of the Caribbean and those period pieces with nuff nuff land for a 5 feature film slate in a country where the average salary is ??% of Barbados’

    Brook Benton sung it best “Laura, tell me what he’s got that I aint got, tell me what he’s got that i cant give you, it must be something that i was born without…” (of that we lost effing up the landscape over the years)

    That Island in the Sun Harry Bellafonte Movie long done wid David

    “On a Caribbean island, a rich landowner’s son, Maxwell Fleury (James Mason), is fighting for political office against black labor leader David Boyeur (Harry Belafonte). As if the contentious election weren’t enough, there are plenty of scandals to go around: Boyeur has a secret white lover….”

    Grenada has that pristine beauty still we done long lost it.

    Like

  24. David September 22, 2016 at 10:49 AM #

    Big Changes at Airbnb

    Like

  25. David September 22, 2016 at 2:21 PM #

    Like

  26. lawson September 22, 2016 at 2:32 PM #

    piece is right if you want film production it is seminal, you need lots of it. since the copa and harrys seem to be coming back maybe a cockumentary of the old place.

    Like

  27. Hants September 22, 2016 at 2:44 PM #

    @ millertheannunaki wrote “Why not try to avoid the use of fossil fuel? ”

    I totally agree. Buildings in Barbados should be using solar.

    Like

  28. David September 22, 2016 at 6:11 PM #

    Like

  29. David September 23, 2016 at 8:49 AM #

    Like

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