FG Announces Tax Holiday For Creative Industry

Creative Industry: Pioneer Status Will Catalyse Investments - Lai Mohammed
Mr Lai Mohammed

The Federal Government is optimistic that the tax holiday granted to the creative industry will go a long way in transforming the sector into a creative economy.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed, explained in a statement issued on Thursday that the decision to grant the tax holiday was in fulfilment of a promise made earlier by the government.

The Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, had made the promise in July while representing the Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, at the opening of the Creative Industry Financing Conference in Lagos.

The pioneer status is granted to companies making investments in qualifying industries and products as tax holiday from the payment of corporate income tax and withholding tax on dividend from pioneer profits for an initial period of three years, extendable for one or two additional years.

According to the statement, the pioneer status for the creative industry covers music production, publishing and distribution – including online digital distribution – photography; production as well as post-production of digital content for motion pictures, videos, television programmes, commercials, distribution and exhibition (digital movies, animation, videos, TV programmes and commercials); publishing of books (copyrighted books) as well as development and publishing of ready-made software (operating systems, software applications and computer games).

“This is a shot in the arm for the creative industry, and it will definitely catalyse investments in the industry. It is also the answer to our quest to spur the establishment of world class studios in Nigeria for production and post-production of movies and music videos,” the Minister said.

He added that the need to grant the status to the sector and tackle the piracy of creative works were among the key issues raised by participants at the Creative Industry Financing Conference.

“It is a measure of the increasing importance attached to the industry by the Federal Government that these issues are now being handled with utmost urgency. First, the ‘pioneer status’ has been granted within three weeks of the conclusion of the conference.

“Secondly, an Anti-Piracy Committee – comprising representatives of the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, industry stakeholders and the police – has been set up to work out the modality for tackling piracy in a lasting and sustainable manner,” said Mr Mohammed.

The minister thanked stakeholders in the industry for supporting the government’s efforts which he said have succeeded in putting the creative industry on the front burner of the economy.

“We are determined to do more for the creative industry in order to allow the creative talents of our youths to blossom, create massive jobs and position Nigeria as a global hub for the industry.”

Entertainers Hold Talks With Lai Mohammed On Growth Of Creative Industry

Entertainers and stakeholders on Monday, met with top government officials to proffer solution to some industry challenges.

Among those in attendance was TV personality, Mo Abudu, who believes that the interface with the government would create a more effective and impactful industry.

The meeting was aimed at formalising the public-private partnership in the sector and the consensus for both parties was that the creative industry should not be treated as a side story but the main one.

The Director-General of the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation, Folorunsho Coker noted that the entertainment industry is currently the nation’s major sectors, hence much importance should be placed on it.

“Presently this industry represents our largest asset, it is our duty in the public sector to advocate for more resources for the sector and encourage a deeper understanding from the government of the immense possibilities that can come from considered national strategy.

“At the national level, we are capitalising on our experience to reach out to a wider market in promoting the best of Nigeria,” he said

On behalf of the Federal Government, the Minister of Information Culture and Tourism, Lai Mohammed embraced the findings and reached to raise the commitment of the public sector.

“I have called this round table for one reason only, which is to fast track our main objective of transforming the creative industry to a creative economy. That is the objective against the background of this administration’s intention and supporting and facilitating an enabling environment for the true business growth of the creative sector.

“This administration has no doubt that the plan to transform the creative industry must be driven by a private sector. After all, it is self-evident that the modest growth that has been achieved in this sector so far, whether, in films, music or fashion has been achieved in spite of the government.

“It, therefore, stands to reason that when the government provides the necessarily enable environment and the private sector in the driver’s seat transformation can be realised within a short time,” he stated.

FG Says Nigeria Can Explore Creative Industry To Overcome Recession

Recession, Creative Industry, NigeriaThe Federal Government is exploring the potentials of the creative industry to generate revenue and overcome Nigeria’s economic recession.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed, stated this at a meeting with Commissioners of Culture and Tourism across various states in Nigeria, ahead of the 2016 Abuja Carnival.

Mr Mohammed told the gathering on Saturday that the industry has the potential and does not require huge investments to thrive.

He expressed optimism that the creative industry, if properly harnessed, would rescue Nigeria from its present challenges.

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Information and Culture, Ayotunde Adesugba, noted that it was the first time the carnival would be held under the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration.

He said that the government was making every effort to see the festival succeed, even in the face of the present economic crisis.

The carnival is expected to kick off on November 19 while at least one million people are expected at the event.