Entertainment Incentive Banner

Entertainment Incentive

Under the Omnibus Incentives Regime, the Customs Tariff (Revision) Resolution is geared towards the productive sector, and provides for the duty-free importation of capital equipment, raw materials and other industry-related consumer goods. The key benefit is the introduction of the Productive Inputs Relief (PIR) scheme. Special categories have been created for companies in the manufacturing, agriculture, tourism and health sectors, along with companies within the creative industries.

No application is necessary for you to access the benefits under the Omnibus Incentives framework.  An individual or entity seeking to benefit from the Productive Inputs Relief (PIR) system must first register with the respective regulating Ministry for status as a bona fide ‘Producer’.   The Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment & Sport (MCGES) is the regulating Ministry for the Creative Industries sector.

The Government of Jamaica through the MCGES has provided an E-Registry for the registration of entertainment practitioners and entertainment companies.  This National Registry of Entertainment and Creative Industries Practitioners (E-Registry), is the primary means by which individuals and companies seeking and receiving benefits under the Fiscal Incentives Act are publicly recorded. The Registry includes persons from all creative sectors covered by the Act including music, film, literary arts, visual and performing arts, new and digital media and animation. Registrants are deemed to be “Recognised Entertainment Producers”.  For more information about accessing this incentive see the next step of this business process guideline.


How to access Entertainment Incentives.

The Process
Process Quick Tips
  1. Items that are imported and landed in Jamaica prior to the final “Status” designation being awarded to your company, will not be covered by the entertainment fiscal incentives, as the benefits cannot be applied retroactively. Where goods are imported prior to the grant of the Entertainment Practitioner/Producer Status you will be required to pay all the applicable border taxes. 
  2. The relief is subject to the proviso that imported items are not available in adequate supplies from a local manufacturer or from a manufacturer within the CARICOM Common Market area or are not otherwise prohibited from benefitting from this relief.
  3. Whenever importing items/goods, you will need to notify the MCGES and JAMPRO so your records can be updated. JAMPRO will also need to stamp the invoice of imported goods before you go to the ports to collect.
  4. Companies should note that the PIR only covers the import duties. Companies from the entertainment/creative industries sector are required to pay all other port charges and fees. Key among those are the:
    • Customs Administration Fee (CAF): is a schedule of applicable fees based on the item being imported
    • Value Added Tax (General Consumption Tax (GCT)): the tax varies between two rates, i.e. 16.5% or 21.5%
    • Standards Compliance Fee (SCF): 0.3% of the Cost, Insurance and Freight (CIF) value of the imported item
    • Environmental Levy: 0.5% of the CIF value of the imported item
    • Special Consumption Tax (SCT): Applied to few items including alcoholic beverages, most tobacco products and some petroleum products
    • Stamp Duty: two rates are applied, i.e. J$5.00 and J$100.00 depending on the CIF value of the imported item.
    • Corporate Income Tax Liability Reduction, under the The Fiscal Incentives Act (FIA) allows companies to access these benefits:
    • Employment Tax Credit (ETC) provides a tax credit amounting to a maximum of 30% of the accumulated employer’s portion of the statutory deductions for both new and existing employees.  This can effectively reduce the Corporate Income Tax (CIT) rate to as low as 17.5%
    • Capital Allowance reduces the proportion of company’s income against which the corporate income tax will be charged. Provides for an initial 20% allowance on capital expenditure related to construction, alteration and renovation of industrial buildings, and covers a broadened definition of “industrial buildings”.
    • Duty-free Importation of Equipment and Machinery, as well as revised tariff rates ranging from 0% to no higher than 20% (with some exceptions).
    • Film Industry Bond Waiver, on the temporary importation of their film equipment
  5. Some items are exempted from the PIR, i.e. goods listed in Part I of the Fourth Schedule of the Customs Tariff (Revision) (Amendment) Resolution 2013 and goods that the Commissioner of Customs is satisfied can be obtained in adequate supplies from a local manufacturer or from within CARICOM.  This list of ineligible goods is not exhaustive, and a complete listing can be found in the Customs Tariff.
  6. It is recommended that taxpayers contact a licensed Customs Broker to assist with information for items being imported for use in the entertainment industry.
  7. An entity related to the creative industries and tourism sectors, which continues to benefit under a repealed incentive law (“continuing beneficiary”) cannot simultaneously enjoy the terms and conditions under the Omnibus incentives scheme. In order to receive the new tax incentive credits and other benefits under the reformed incentive regime, the “continuing beneficiary” must first elect to give up their current entitlements.

For more information, contact MCGES at entertainment@mcges.gov.jm or 1 (876) 978-7654.