Ratification of the European Convention

Law of Ukraine “On Ratification of the European Convention on Cinematographic Co-Production”

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On October 02, 1992, the European Convention on Cinematographic Co-Production was signed on behalf of Ukraine in Strasbourg. The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine ratified the Convention on March 18, 2009 (by adopting the Law of Ukraine No. 1140-VI). Current wording as amended by the Law of Ukraine No. 579-VII, dated September 18, 2013

Essence of the Convention

In Article 1 of the Convention, its parties undertake to promote the development of European co-cinematographic production.

The Convention shall apply to:

  • co-produced products involving at least three co-producers located in the territory of three different Parties to the Convention; and
  • co-produced products involving at least three co-producers located in the territory of three different Parties to the Convention and one or more co-producers not located in the territory of those Parties. However, the total contribution of co-producers not located in the territories of the Parties to the Convention may not exceed 30 % of the overall production costs.

According to Article 4 of the Convention, European cinematographic works created as multilateral products and falling within the scope of the Convention shall enjoy the benefits provided to national films according to the current laws and regulations in each territory of the Parties to the Convention which participated in the relevant co-production. Benefits shall be provided to each co-producer by the Party in the territory of which it is located.

Any co-production of cinematographic works shall be subject to approval by the competent authorities of the Parties in the territories of the co-producers are located after consultation between the competent authorities. Projects of an openly pornographic nature or those promoting violence or openly offend human dignity cannot be granted co-production status (Article 5 of the Convention). The Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Ukraine is a competent body that has the right to grant the status of a co-production product in Ukraine.

Article 8 of the Convention establishes that the contribution of each of the co-producers shall include effective technical and artistic participation. In addition, the contribution of co-producers relating to creative, technical and artistic personnel, cast and facilities shall be proportional to their investment.

Requirements for products that can be granted the status of co-production product are contained in Article 9 of the Convention.

According to Article 10 of the Convention, a general balance shall be maintained in the cinematographic relations of the Parties with regard both to the total amount invested and the artistic and technical participation in coproduction cinematographic works. A Party which, over a reasonable period, observes a deficit in its co-production relations with one or more other Parties may, with a view to maintaining its cultural identity, withhold its approval of a subsequent co-production until balanced cinematographic relations with that or those Parties have been restored.

It is provided that each Party shall facilitate entry and residence, as well as the granting of work permits in its territory, of technical and artistic personnel from other Parties participating in a co-production. Similarly, each Party shall permit the temporary import and re-export of equipment necessary to the production and distribution of cinematographic works (Article 11 of the Convention).

According to Article 13 of the Convention, when a co-produced cinematographic work is exported to a country where imports of cinematographic works are subject to quotas, and one of the co-producing Parties does not have the right of free entry for its cinematographic works to the importing country:

  • the cinematographic work shall normally be added to the quota of the country which has the majority participation;
  • in the case of a cinematographic work which comprises an equal participation from different countries, the cinematographic work shall be added to the quota of the country which has the best opportunities for exporting to the importing country;
  • when the provisions of above sub-clauses cannot be applied, the cinematographic work shall be entered in the quota of the Party which provides the director.

When granting co-production status, the competent authority of a Party may demand from the co-producer established in its territory a final version of the cinematographic work in one of the languages of that Party (Article 14 of the Convention).

According to Article 15 of the Convention, unless the co-producers decide otherwise, co-produced cinematographic works shall be shown at international festivals by the Party where the majority co-producer is established, or, in the case of equal financial participation, by the Party which provides the director.

This Convention shall be open for signature by the member-states of the Council of Europe and the other states-parties to the European Cultural Convention which may express their consent to be bound by:

  • signature without reservation as to ratification, acceptance or approval; or
  • signature subject to ratification, acceptance or approval, followed by ratification, acceptance or approval.

Instruments of ratification, acceptance or approval shall be deposited with the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.