Iceland Boosts Tax Break to 25 Percent

by Scott Roxborough

‘Game of Thrones,’ ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ and Netflix’s ‘Sense8’ are among the recent productions to shoot in Iceland.

The parliament in Iceland has approved an increase in the country’s tax incentive for film shoots, boosting its tax break from 20 percent to 25 percent.

The new incentive with kick in on Jan. 1. The parliament in Reykjavik has renewed Iceland’s popular tax incentive program until 2021.

Iceland has been particularly successful at attracting big-budget feature films and TV series to use its stunning natural landscape as a backdrop. It stood in for the icy planet of Hoth in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and is the world beyond the Wall in Game of Thrones.

Several big series have also shot there, including Fortitude, the crime drama from Sky, and Netflix’s sci-fi series Sense8.

The battle for runaway productions is heating up across Europe. In January, France increased its rebate incentive from 20 percent to 30 percent of local spend, and Norway joined the club with a new 25 percent tax rebate. Romania has introduced draft proposals for a tax scheme of its own, and German producers are pushing their government for a more generous scheme, one that doesn’t cap rebates for big-budget features.

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