The Australian Post and VFX Alliance
Before COVID, many international post-production projects never came to Australia. But now, Australian-owned companies have been able to compete and win millions in post-production and visual effects work that can be done remotely, helped in a big way by the government’s Post, Digital and Visual Effects (PDV) 30% tax rebate.
But in 2021, the Morrison government announced plans to raise the PDV Offset threshold from $500,000 to $1 million.
What did the sector have to lose?
Most post-production budgets sit under $1 million, so doubling the tax rebate threshold to $1 million would leave Australian-owned firms unable to compete.
It would be turning the offset off!
The industry faced:
- Missing out on the millions worth of post-production and visual effects projects every year with growing export revenues cut off overnight.
- Losing over 400 full and part-time jobs in Australia.
- Losing the opportunity to use this investment to cross-subsidise Australian productions and tell Australian stories.
- An inability to grow and expand this important industry that showcases and grows Australian talent.
Working with leading Australian post-production and VFX houses across the country, Campaign Edge supported the development of the nearly formed Australian Post and VFX Alliance (APVA).
The campaign included:
- Website design and branding
- All copywriting for web and stakeholder briefings
- A deliberate program of government/legislator engagement.
- This included:
- Lobbying for a Senate inquiry
- Briefing Members of Parliament and Senators, and briefings to parliamentary advisors
- Facilitating lobbying of MPs and Senators by industry partners, including affected SMEs and government-adjacent bodies
- A public relations strategy showcasing the impact of the proposed change for Australian-owned SMEs, culminating in decisive media reporting
- Film and TV industry oppose tax change, Australian Financial Review, 20 September 2021
- Streaming platforms take work overseas amid tax change plan, Australian Financial Review, 28 September 2021
- Morrison rebate rules put Exorcist trilogy in a spin, Australian Financial Review, 15 October 2021
- Composers say film and TV tax changes strike the wrong note, Australian Financial Review, 29 November 2021
On Wednesday, 1 December 2021, the Senate voted to remove the dangerous provisions from the Bill that would have undermined the long-term viability of Australia post-production.
This outcome followed months of sector-wide campaigning led by the Australian Post and VFX Alliance, alongside affected Australian SMEs, state governments and their agencies, and international partners.
The industry thanks the government, opposition, and crossbenchers for their engagement, and their acknowledgement of the strong contribution our sector makes to the Australian economy and society more widely.