NZSPG - New Zealand 1 July 2017

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The New Zealand Grant is focused on industry development outcomes, underpinned by cultural criteria. 

The purpose of the New Zealand Grant is twofold:

  • To build the sustainability, scale and  critical mass of the domestic industry, and support the development of New Zealand creatives.
  • To provide cultural benefits to New Zealand by supporting the creation of New Zealand content and stories.

New Zealand productions may access a cash grant of 40% of QNZPE on up to $15 million QNZPE (New Zealand Grant).  The New Zealand Grant is capped at $6 million per production unless the production qualifies for an Additional Grant.  

Productions that meet additional criteria may access a cash grant of 40% of QNZPE between $15 million and $50 million (Additional Grant).  The Additional Grant is capped at $14 million.  In return for an Additional Grant, applicants must provide the NZFC with a share of net receipts (including profit) from the production equivalent to 50% of the equity share in the production attributable to the value of the Additional Grant.    

The total maximum New Zealand Grant is $20 million.    

We administer the New Zealand Grant on behalf of the Ministry for Culture and Heritage. This grant replaces the Screen Production Incentive Fund (SPIF).  

If you have any questions about Incentives, please contact [email protected] or call the Incentives Executive on +64 4 382 7680.   

For full details please read the NZSPG Criteria for New Zealand Productions available at the bottom of this page.  A summary of eligibility is set out below.    

Specific Eligibility Criteria 

Formats and Expenditure Thresholds

Format Minimum QNZPE (or TPE for official co-productions)
Feature film $2.5 million
Single episode programme, scripted $1 million total &
No less than $800,000 per hour
Single episode programme, unscripted $250,000
Series of programmes, scripted $1 million total &
No less than $500,000 per hour
Series of programmes, unscripted No less than $250,000 per hour
Short form animation (single episode or series) $250,000 total &
No less than $400,000 per hour

Please see Section 2A of the criteria for more detail on eligible formats.

New Zealand Distribution

Feature films must have secure confirmed commercial cinematic distribution in New Zealand.
Other formats must have a secure confirmed commercial agreement for distribution on an appropriate platform in New Zealand. The scope of distribution in New Zealand must be commensurate with the expected amount of the New Zealand Grant.

Significant New Zealand Content

Productions must have significant New Zealand content as determined by a points test - see the guidelines in Appendix 3 of the criteria.  Productions certified as official co-productions are deemed to have significant New Zealand content for the purposes of this grant (with the exception of those applying for the Additional Grant) and do not need to meet the points test.

Non-New Zealand Government Funding Threshold and Market Attachments

Feature films must have at least 10% of their budget funded by non-New Zealand government sources of funding.  The proportion of non-New Zealand government production funding for a television or other non-feature film production must be 25% of the production budget or higher.  A television or other non-feature film must have market attachments that comprise 10% or more of the production budget.

Other New Zealand Government Funding

Feature films may receive production funding from other New Zealand government agencies as well as a New Zealand Grant.  Other screen formats may not receive production funding from other New Zealand government agencies, as well as a New Zealand Grant unless they are an animated production or a children's drama production.

A production cannot receive a New Zealand Grant and an International Grant.

General Eligibility Criteria

Special Purpose Vehicle

Applicants must be a special purpose vehicle set up solely to make the production, unless they fall within one of the exceptions set out in the criteria.

Residency Status

Applicants must be a New Zealand resident company or a New Zealand resident partnership.  It is not enough for a company to be incorporated in New Zealand to be considered a New Zealand resident company.  Please read the criteria for more detail.   

Ongoing Engagement

An applicant, or the applicant’s parent company, must have been significantly and actively engaged in the business of film or television production in New Zealand for at least 18 months prior to the scheduled start of principal photography.

Responsible Entity

Applicants for this grant must be the entity responsible for all activities in making the production in New Zealand.  

Producer's Income

Income earned by producers from successful productions helps create sustainable New Zealand screen production businesses.  Therefore, the New Zealand government expects that all New Zealand Grant recipients will have an equity share in the production that is commensurate with the Grant so they may reinvest in the New Zealand screen sector.  See Section 2B of the criteria for more details.  

QNZPE

QNZPE is generally production expenditure spent by the applicant on:

  • services provided in New Zealand
  • the use of land located in New Zealand
  • goods purchased, hired or leased in New Zealand, provided they are sourced from within New Zealand
  • goods sourced from overseas, provided those goods are not otherwise available in New Zealand, are located in New Zealand during the making of the production and are purchased, hired or leased from a New Zealand Resident who typically supplies that type of good.

QNZPE includes the fees and expenses of non-New Zealanders who work on the production in New Zealand, provided (in the case of non-cast members) they work on the production for at least 14 days total.

Further details on exclusions to QNZPE are set out in Section 3 of the criteria.   

Additional Grant

Productions with QNZPE of $15 million or more may access the Additional Grant provided they meet the additional criteria in relation to producer experience, and market attachment, and pass the Significant Cultural Benefits Test (including Official Co-productions).  In return for the Additional Grant, applicants must provide the NZFC with a share of net receipts (including profit) from the production. See Appendix 4of the criteria for more details.

Application Process

Registration

For planning purposes, all applicants must either register with the NZFC prior to the start of principal photography or apply for a provisional certificate. The registration is available at the bottom of this page.

Provisional Certification

If an applicant chooses not to register, they must apply for a provisional certificate before the start of production.  A provisional certificate is not a guarantee that the production will receive final certification but it does indicate whether the production meets the relevant specific eligibility criteria or general eligibility criteria. Those applying for an Additional Grant must submit a provisional application.
The provisional application process usually takes a minimum of eight weeks.  A provisional certificate will lapse after six months unless the production starts principal photography within that time frame.

Final Certification

You can submit a final application once the production has been completed.

You cannot apply later than six months after completion of the production.

Applications must include an independent auditor’s report from an approved auditor and all applications must be made on the relevant final application form.

We send a copy of each application to the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) for verification against the applicant’s tax records and to an independent consultant for assessment.
Once we receive reports from the IRD and the independent consultant, we submit the application to the NZSPG Panel for approval. The application process usually takes three months and payment usually takes 10 business days from approval.

Please see the Promotional Materials Schedule document at the bottom of the page regarding materials that must be provided by grant applicants when submitting a final application.
An application fee may be payable for making an application for the New Zealand Grant.

Further information

Please refer to the NZSPG Criteria for New Zealand Productions for detailed information about this grant. 

Application forms are available below. Completed application forms or any queries about this process should be sent to [email protected].