New IMDA boost for Singapore’s media sector, including $8M fund

New IMDA boost for Singapore’s media sector, including $8M fund

The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) has announced a series of initiatives to support the local media sector in times of COVID-19.

The initiatives aim to help media companies benefit from project opportunities and reduced operating costs, as well as assist media professionals and freelancers with training and upskilling.

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"The Government will continue to support our media companies and professionals as they weather this trying period, so that they can continue to create content that inspires, uplifts and binds us as one united people," says Minister for Communications and Information S Iswaran, adding that these initiatives are part of the government's larger national effort to protect jobs and livelihoods. 

"In the longer term, the Government will continue to build capabilities to better prepare our workers, businesses and people to seize opportunities. Working together, we will overcome this period of uncertainty and emerge stronger as one."

Read more about the initiatives below. 

Supporting Media Professionals and Freelancers

IMDA will be launching a new $8 million Public Service Content (PSC) Fund to protect jobs. Under this initiative, Mediacorp, Viddsee and SPH will commission short-form content for their digital platforms by calling for proposals. Media companies and talent can begin conceptualising and submitting their proposals to be ready for production work when circuit breaker measures are lifted.

IMDA will also support ground-up initiatives by media associations to support those in need. MDA will match the Singapore Association for Motion Picture Professionals’ (SAMPP) COVID-19 Relief Fund contribution of $20,000 to support media practitioners affected by the cancellation and postponement of projects.

IMDA will support the upskilling of Self-Employed Persons (SEPs) by providing a training grant of up to 90% of course fees. In addition to subsidised fees, Self-Employed Persons, including freelancers, can benefit from training allowance for eligible courses.

Supporting Media Companies

To help media companies reduce their operating costs, the Film Exhibition and Distribution Licence Fees will be waived from 17 April 2020. The waiver will apply to new licence applications and renewal of existing licences. Classification fees for films (public exhibition and video distribution), video games and label fees will also be waived until further notice.

To help local media companies strengthen their capabilities and increase their competitiveness, IMDA will leverage the expertise of MNC partners to implement the Capabilities Partnership Programme (CPP), which pairs media MNCs with local media companies to develop uniquely local content. 

Find out more here

Title Image Credit: Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA)