India-Newzealand Audio Visual Agreement

By Pickle  July 29, 2019
India-Newzealand Audio Visual Agreement, Pickle Media

The Government of The Republic of India and The Government of New Zealand (‘the parties’)Seeking to enhance cooperation between their two countries in the area of film;Desirous of expanding and facilitating the Co-Production of films which may be conducive to the film industries of both countries and to the development of their cultural and economic exchanges;Convinced that these exchanges will contribute to the enhancement of relations between the two countries;

Have agreed as follows:



For the purposes of this Agreement

Competent authorities shall be:on behalf of the Republic of India,

the Ministry of Information and; andOn behalf of the Government of New Zealand – to be indicated –

“Co-producer” shall be:as regards the Republic of India:nationals/citizens of the Republic of India;permanent residents of India;

andentities which are established and/or incorporated in regards the New Zealand – to be indicated –

‘Film’ means an aggregate of images, or of images and sounds, embodied in any material, irrespective of length, including animation and docu¬mentary productions, produced in any format, for exploitation in theatres, on tele¬vision, videocassette, videodisc, CD-ROM, DVD or by any other form of distri¬bution. New forms of audiovisual production will be included in this Agreement, through the exchange of notes between the Contracting Parties.


Competent authorities

The competent authorities responsible for the implementation of this Agreement shall be as defined in Article 1.Co-Productions falling within the scope of this Agreement shall be subject to the approval of the competent authorities.

The Contracting Parties shall inform each other if the competent authorities are replaced by others.


Recognition as a National film and Entitlement to Benefits

Views to be indicated later.


Conditions for obtaining approval of Co-Production status

Co-Production films shall require, prior to the commencement of shooting, approval by both the competent authorities. Approvals shall be in writing and shall specify the conditions upon which approval is granted.

In considering proposals for the making of a Co-Production film, both the competent authorities, shall with due regard to their respective policies and guidelines, apply the rules set out in the Annex to this Agreement.

The Co-producers of a film shall have their principal office or a branch office in the territory of one of the Contracting Parties. None of the Co-producers shall be linked by common management, ownership or control.

Technical and artistic personnel are those persons who, in accordance with the domestic law in force in their own country, are recognized as makers of audio-visual productions, in particular screenwriters, directors, composers, editors, directors of photography, art directors, actors and sound technicians. The contribution of each of these persons shall be evaluated individually.

As a rule, the contribution includes at least one leading actor, one supporting actor and/or one qualified technical staff person, in addition to the one person as referred to in paragraph (4) provided that two qualified technical staff persons may substitute for one leading actor.

The Co-producers in either of the two countries shall satisfy themselves about each other’s capability, including their professional knowledge, organizational capability, financial backing and professional reputation. The Contracting Parties are not responsible or liable for the credentials of either of the Co-producers.

The company carrying out the Co-Production shall provide evidence that the primary business of that company is audiovisual (film, television and video) production.

The sharing of expenses and revenues shall be as mutually decided by the Co Producers.



Any benefits under this Agreement shall be available for the Co-Production only when investment of finance, material and management including creative and other inputs is not below 20 % (twenty percent) of the total cost coming from the Co-producer of one country. The proportion of the respective contribution of the co producers of the Parties may vary from 20% (twenty percent) to 80% (eighty percent).

Subject to prior approval and in exceptional cases both Competent Authorities may approve Audiovisual Co-Productions where:

the contribution by one Co-producer is limited to the provision of finance only, in which case the proposed finance-only contribution shall be 50% (Fifty per cent) or more of the total budget of the Audiovisual Co-Production; or

Despite falling outside the contribution rules, the Competent Authorities consider that the project would further the objectives of this Agreement and should be approved accordingly.

Both the financial contribution, and the performing, technical, craft and creative participation of each Co-producer shall account for at least 20% (twenty per cent) of the total effort in making the Co-Production film.


Minority and majority contribution in the case of multilateral Co-Productions

Subject to the specific conditions and limits laid down in laws and regulations in force in the Contracting Parties, in the case of multilateral Co-Productions, the minority contribution may not be less than 10% (ten per cent) and the majority contribution may not exceed 70% (seventy per cent) of the total cost of the film.

Both Competent Authorities shall also look favourably upon co production to be undertaken with any other country linked with India and New Zealand by an official co production agreement.



The persons participating in the production of a film shall fulfill the following requirements:

As regards the Republic of India, they shall be –

Nationals/Citizens of the Republic of India or

Permanent residents of India;

As regards the New Zealand – to be indicated –

Participants in the Co-Production as defined in sub paragraphs (a) and (b) must at all times throughout the production retain their national status, and may not acquire or lose such status at any point during the course of production activity.

Subject to the approval of the competent authorities:

where script or costs dictates, restricted numbers of performers from other countries may be engaged;

in exceptional circumstances, restricted numbers of technical personnel from other countries may be engaged


Film Processing, Laboratory work, Negatives and Languages etc.

The processing of film including the laboratory work, digital intermediate, visual and special effects work shall be done in either India or New Zealand unless it is technically impossible to do so, in which case the Competent Authorities of both countries may authorize such work in a country not participating in the co production.

At least 90% (ninety per cent) of the footage included in a Co-Production film shall be specially shot or crated for the film unless otherwise approved by the competent authorities

Two negatives, or at least one negative and one duplicate negative, shall be made of all Co-produced films. Each Co-producer shall be entitled to make a further duplicate or prints there from. Each Co-producer shall also be entitled to use the original negative in accordance with the conditions agreed upon between the Co-producers themselves.

The original soundtrack of each Co-Production film shall be made in Hindi or any other Indian language or dialect or, in English or —– or in any combination of those permitted languages. Dialogue in other languages may be included in the Co-Production, as the script requires.

The dubbing or subtitling into one of the permitted languages of the Republic of India or New Zealand shall be carried out in the Republic of India, or in the New Zealand. Any departure from this principle must be approved by the competent authorities.

Post-release print dubbed into any other language may be carried out in third countries

The soundtrack may contain sections of dialogue in any language in so far as is required by the script.


Location Shooting

Live action shooting and animation works such as storyboards, layout, key animation, in between and voice recording must, in principle, be carried out either in India or in New Zealand.

The Competent Authorities may approve location shooting in a country other than those of the participating Co-producers if the script or action so requires and if technicians from India and New Zealand take part in the shooting.

Notwithstanding Article 7, where location shooting is approved in accordance with the present Article, citizens of the country in which location shooting takes place may be employed as crowd artists, in small roles, or as additional employees whose services are necessary for the location work to be undertaken.


Entry in International Festivals

The majority Co-producer shall normally enter Co-produced films in international festi¬vals.

Films produced on the basis of equal contributions shall be entered as a film of the country of which the director is a national, and if this is not possible then the film shall be submitted as a film of the country of which the lead actor is a national, subject to the agreement of the competent authorities of both Contracting Parties.


Export of Co produced Film

Where a Co-Production is exported to a country that has quota regulations, it shall be included in the quota of the Party:

which is the majority Co-producer;

that has the best opportunity of arranging for its export, if the respective contributions of the Co-producers are equal;

of which the director is a national, if any difficulties arise with the application of sub-paragraphs (a) and (b) hereof.

Not withstanding Paragraph 1, in the event that one of the Co-producing countries enjoys unrestricted entry of its films into a country that has quota regulations, a Co-Production undertaken under this Agreement shall be as entitled as any other national production of the above-mentioned Co-producing country to unrestricted entry into the importing country if that above-mentioned Co-producing country so agrees.


Acknowledgements, Credits

A Co-Production film and the promotional material associated with it shall include either a credit title indicating that the film is an ‘Official Indian-New Zealand Co-Production” or an ‘Official New Zealand – Indian Co-Production” or , where relevant, a credit which reflects the participation of the Republic of India, New Zealand and the country of a third Co-producer.


Temporary Entry into the country

For approved Co-Productions, each Contracting Party shall facilitate, in accordance with the domestic law in force in its country:

Entry into and temporary residence in its territory for technical and artistic personnel of the other Contracting Party;

the import into and export from its territory of technical and other filmmaking equipment and materials by producers of the other Contracting Party.


Permission for Public Exhibition

Permission for public exhibition will be in accordance with local laws in both India and New Zealand.

The approval of Co-Production status under this Agreement will not mean a commitment to permit public exhibition of the Audiovisual Co-Production.


Balanced contribution

A general balance should be maintained with regard to both the artistic and technical personnel, including the cast, and with regard to the financial investment and facilities (studios, laboratories, and postproduction).

The Joint Commission, established in terms of Article 16, shall carry out a review to see whether this balance has been maintained and, if this is not the case, shall take measures, which it considers necessary in order to re-establish such a balance.


Joint Commission

The Joint Commission shall be composed of representatives from the Competent Authorities and from the audio-visual industry of both the contracting parties.

The role of the Joint Commission shall be to supervise and review the operation of this Agreement and to make any proposals considered necessary to improve the effect of the Agreement.

The Joint Commission shall be convened, whether by meeting or otherwise, at the request of either of the Parties within six months of such a request.


Status of Annex

The Annex to this agreement constitutes an implementing arrangement in respect of this Agreement and shall be read in conjunction with the provisions of this Agreement

Subject to paragraph 2 of Article 18, any modifications to the Annex shall be agreed by both the competent authorities. No modifications to the Annex shall conflict with the provisions of this Agreement.

Modifications to the Annex shall be confirmed by the competent authorities in writing and shall take effect on the date they specify.


Entry into Force

Each of the Parties shall notify the other in writing through the diplomatic channel of the completion of any procedure required by its constitutional law for giving effect.



Subject to paragraph 2 of this Article, this Agreement may be amended by written agreement between the two parties through an exchange of diplomatic notes. Amendments shall take effect on the date specified in the notes.

Either Party may by diplomatic note notify the other of a change in its competent authority. The change shall take effect on the date specified in the note.


Settlement of Disputes

Any dispute between the Contracting Parties arising out of the interpretation or implementation of this Agreement shall be settled consensually through consultation and negotiation.


Duration and Termination

The term of this Agreement shall be for a period of three years from the date it enters into force and thereafter automatically renewed for further periods of three years.

Either Contracting Party may terminate this Agreement by giving six months’ written notice in advance of such intention to the other Contracting Party through the diplomatic channel.

Termination of this Agreement shall have no effect on the comple-tion of Co-Productions approved prior to its termination.

Done at ______________________-this ____day of ______________, ________in the English and Hindi languages, both texts being equally authentic. In case of any divergence in interpretation, the English text shall prevail.

For the Government of Republic of INDIA

For the Government of NEW ZEALAND

Annexure to Agreement between the Government of the Republic of India and the Government of the ____________________ on Audio Visual Co-Productions

(Rules of procedure for applications for approval of Co-Production status under this agreement)

Applications for qualification of a film for Co-Production benefits under this Agreement for any Co-Production must be made simultaneously to both competent authorities at least thirty (30) days before shooting begins.

The competent authority of both Parties shall communicate their proposal to the other competent authority within twenty (20) days of the submission of the complete documentation as described in paragraph 3 below.

Documentation submitted in support of an application shall consist of the following items, drafted in _________in the case of _______ and in English in the case of India:

3.1 The final script and synopsis; Co-Productions under this Agreement shall be shot in ____________or India, as the case may be, in accordance with the guidelines of the respective country; The Parties shall inform each other from time to time of relevant guidelines and any changes thereto.

3.2 Documentary proof of having legally acquired the rights to produce and exploit the Co-Production and that the copyright for the Co-Production has been legally acquired;

3.3 a copy of the Co-Production contract signed by the two Co-producers.

The contract shall include –

the title of the Co-Production;

the name of the author of the script, or that of the adaptor if it is drawn from a literary source; necessary permission for adapting the literary work into a film from the author/legal heirs may be attached;

the name of the director (a substitution clause is permitted to provide for his/her replacement if necessary);

the budget;

the financing plan;

a clause establishing the sharing of revenues, markets, media or a combination of these;

a clause detailing the respective shares of the Co-producers in any over or under expenditure, which shares shall in principle be proportional to their respective contributions, although the minority Co-producer’s share in any over expenditure may be limited to a lower percentage or to a fixed amount providing that the minimum proportion permitted under Article 9 of the Agreement is respected;

a clause stating that the competent authorities have to be informed if the percentage of the contribution of a co- producer changes subsequent to the approval of the competent authorities; in any case, the contribution may not be less than the minimum contribution agreed in Article 9;

a clause stating that films Co-produced under this Agreement may be publicly exhibited in either country in accordance with prescribed rules/procedures;

a clause recognizing that admission to benefits under this Agreement does not constitute a commitment that governmental authorities in either country will grant a license to permit public exhibition of the Co-Production;

a clause prescribing the measures to be taken where:

(i) after full consideration of the case, the competent authorities in either country refuse to grant the benefits applied for;

(ii) the competent authorities prohibit the exhibition of the Co-Production in either country or its export to a third country;

(iii) either one or the other Party fails to fulfill its commitments;

the period when shooting is to begin;

a clause stipulating that the majority Co-producer shall take out an insurance policy covering at least “all production risks” and “all original material production risks”; and

a clause providing for the sharing of the ownership of copyright on a basis that it is proportionate to the respective contributions of the Co-producers.

3.4 the distribution contract, where it has already been signed, or a draft if it has yet to be concluded;

3.5 a list of the creative and technical personnel indicating their nationalities and, in the case of performers, the roles they are to play;

3.6 the production schedule;

3.7 the detailed budget identifying the expenses to be incurred by each country; and

3.8 all contracts and other relevant financial documentation for all participants in the financial structure.

The competent authorities can demand any further documents and all other additional information deemed necessary.

In principle, the final shooting script (including the dialogue) should be submitted to the competent authorities prior to the commencement of shooting.

Amendments, including the replacement of a Co-producer, may be made in the original contract, but they must be submitted for approval by the competent authorities before the Co-Production is finished. The replacement of a Co-producer may be allowed only in exceptional cases and for reasons satisfactory to both the competent authorities.

The competent authorities will keep each other informed of their respective decisions.

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