The National TV Council in Chile (CNTV), key entity in the Chilean audiovisual industry's development, could see a significant cut in its funds, which now represent the most important subsidy for national TV production.
The news was revealed by Catalina Parot, president of the CNTV, in a letter sent to El Mercurio.
According to the executive, the Budget Division (Dipres), dependant on the Treasury, has proposed reducing the aids to TV production by 50% in 2019, from the $ 4.47 billion forecast (around US$ 6.9 million) to $ 2.22 billion (US$ 3.4 million).
It would be the lowest amount granted by the CNTV Fund in the last decade, since it gave out $ 2.07 billion in 2008. In 2009, the number doubled to $ 4.18 billion and since then (except in 2010, because of the earthquake), the budget stayed above $ 4 billion.
The results of the 2018 edition, whose total budget will rise to $ 4.31 billion (US$ 6.6 million), will be announced in September.
The CNTV Fund seeks to "promote, finance or subsidize production, broadcast or distribution of cultural and national or regional interest productions."
In addition, there's international productions in the works such as Heroes Invisibles
between TVN and YLE; historic series Ines del alma mía
, mased on the Isabel Allende novel, to be developed by Chilevisión, Spanish producer Boomerang TV and pubcaster RTVE, which just joined as producer.
The Industry's Reaction
El Mercurio gathered some of the reactions generated by the news among producers and developers from Chile, who logically reacted to the measure and expressed the need for the funds to maybe even increase their budget.
"We need an increase: if the amount increases, the work, the quality and the amount of services increases. Not only for Chilean ideas, but also for foreign investment," said Juan Ignacio Sabatini, director and executive producer of Villano Producciones, responsible for La cacería, currently on air on Mega.
"TV networks don't provide funding. They pay attention when you win a CNTV," said Macarena Cardone, executive producer of Invercine and Wood (Ramona, Mary & Mike), who also spoke about the important of the CNTV Fund for the internationalization of Chilean series and the possibility to find foreign partners.
"It's so absurd what they want to do, it's like having invested in something for years and when it finally starts to pay off, they eliminate it," said Paula Gómez, director of Mi China Producciones.