In order to maintain Ontario's competitive position as a location of choice for foreign film and television producers, the Ontario Government has just announced a series of proposed amendments to the Ontario Production Services Tax Credit (the "OPSTC") program that will increase the refundable OPSTC from its current level of 25% of qualifying labour expenses to 25% of all qualifying expenses incurred in the Province of Ontario. It is proposed that starting June 30, 2009, the expanded net of qualifying expenditures will include expenditures for equipment rentals and studio rentals, among others.
These changes, in some cases, will significantly increase the amount of the OPSTC otherwise available to foreign producers who choose to produce in Ontario, since labour costs typically account for only about half of the budget of a television series or feature film.
These measures will help Ontario remain an industry leader in film and television production. Ontario's entertainment sector is the third largest in North America after California and New York, employing more than 276,000 persons and generating approximately C$2 billion annually.