Dasmunsi assures tax rebate for entertainment industry in budget

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New Delhi, Dec 19 (UNI) Minister for Information and Broadcasting Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi today announced that a complete overhauling would be brought about in the tax structure for the entertainment industry in the budget for 2008-09 so that it accomplishes real boom and becomes a global industry.

While addressing at a conference on Entertainment and Media 'Focus 2007' organised by ASSOCHAM here, the Minister said he was negotiating with the Finance Minister for bringing about huge tax rebates for film and entertainment industry based on the recommendations of various groups set up to suggest changes in taxation.

Mr Dasmunsi also declared that strict measures would also be brought forth to curb piracy in the entertainment sector so that the film and entertainment industry did not suffer revenue losses, which were currently estimated between 25 to 30 per cent.

The Minister said a group set up by the Ministry on piracy prevention had already given its recommendations based on which measures would be taken in consultation with other government departments and would be announced by early 2008.

A group set up for revenue generation as also on digitalization and overall exchange programmes had also submitted their recommendations, which would be discussed in great details with all stakeholders in the next few days somewhere in the southern part of the country, he said.

He also announced that the Ministry would convene a meeting of all stakeholders in Mumbai in next few weeks and finalise the agenda for bringing about structural changes in the entertainment sector so that in next few years, the industry grows to a size of over Rs 75,000 crore.

Mr Dasmunsi advocated the need for removing the film and entertainment industry from the shakles of control and regulation so that films were produced at lower cost and could be made accessible to all viewers across the country.

Earlier speaking on the occasion, Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel also gave a call for reduced taxation so that films were not only viewed at cheaper rates but also produced at much competitive rates.

He lamented that the government took more than a decade to accord industry status to the films and entertainment sector and promised that now the government would be more liberal.

Minister of State for Mines T Subbarami Reddy who was also present on the occasion said the government would amend the Copyright Act which had become outdated and encouraged piracy.

''The government would soon introduce amendments to the Copyright Act so that the film and entertainment industry grew at an unprecedented rate and acquires the size of more than Rs 75,000 crore,'' he said.

Among others who spoke on the occasion include FTPGI President Ronnie Screwvala, ASSOCHAM President Venugopal N Dhoot, SPICE Corp Chairman B K Modi, Tata Sky CEO Vikram kaushik, Star India President Ajay Vidyasagar, and ZEE News CEO Barun Das.

UNI

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