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Since 2012, the Colombian government has implemented Law 1556 on cinematography. Through this law, international projects have been produced for film and television within the Colombian territory. To date, 32 projects have been executed, including: The 33 by Patricia Riggen, the Spanish Palmeras en La Nieve, Handle with Care co-production between Norway, Denmark and Holland, Out of the dark by Lluís Quilez, Blunt Force Trauma with Mickey Rourke, and more recently: Mille 22 starring Mark Wahlberg and Running with the Devil and Kill Chain starring Nicolas Cage.


According to the Colombian Tax Law (Article 189 - Law 1819 of 2016), regarding the value added tax (VAT), services provided in the country and exclusively exported to companies or persons with no business or activities in Colombia, are deemed to be exempt goods and services with the right to a bimonthly refund.

The law stipulates that there is an export of services in cases related to audiovisual production, therefore it is feasible to request the refund of VAT (sales tax) paid in the country.  


Colombia offers a cash rebate or cash reimbursement for films partially or totally produced in Colombia (production or postproduction); 40% for “film services” and 20% for “film logistics services” (those that are provided for hotel, catering, and transportation) of the amount spent in the country.  In other words, the producer or its investors can obtain a global return that ranges between 25% and 30% invested.

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Long feature film projects (70 min or more) or short films (less than 70 min) of any kind, including animations. Also, film projects made for TV broadcasting of two chapters maximum, totally or partially shot in Colombia. (Advertising or institutional works are excluded).

  • The project in question shall entail expenditures in Colombia for an estimated minimum of USD 520,000 (before taxes), executed in payments for cinematographic services or cinematographic services.


  • The project must be executed by a Colombian production company previously registered in the Ministry of Culture, which will execute and legalize the budget spent in the territory.


  • There must be an external audit company contracted by the production to guarantee the correct execution of the reported resources.


  • A value of 40 minimum monthly salaries, that is, approximately USD 10,500, must be deposited in a Proimágenes Colombia account, as a reliability insurance. This value will be reimbursed to the producer in case the project is not approved, or together with the reimbursement corresponding at the end of the contract.

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