Dáil Éireann - Volume 501 - 09 March, 1999

Written Answers. - Film Industry Development.

85. Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands the expected growth in the film industry in 1999; if this growth is in accord with previous indications; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [6861/99]

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands (Miss de Valera): In regard to film and television projects certified by my Department under the section 481 scheme, 1998 was a record year for expenditure on film production in Ireland. There has been a trend for the average budgets of films certified by my Department under the scheme to increase as the capacity of the industry grows. Growth is related primarily to the development of the skills and physical infrastructure for film production, with the support of incentives and assistance provided by the State. Such skills and infrastructure have been building steadily and I am happy to say that present indications are that this process of growth will continue through 1999.