Update on the Extinction of Public Trusts in Mexico

On Thursday, October 8, at dawn, during the Congressional session in Mexico, with the votes tallied from the political parties Morena, Partido del Trabajo, Partido Verde and Encuentro Social, the bill to extinguish 109 trusts in the Federal Expenditure Budget 2021 (PEF 2021) was approved by a majority. This was done in order to transfer to transfer the direct management of 168,400 million pesos to the Ministry of Finance and Public Credit (SHCP).

Some of the trusts that are disappearing are: the Fund for International Cooperation in Science and Technology, the Technological Innovation Fund of the Ministry of Economy, the Conacyt-Secretary of Energy Sector Fund, the Natural Disasters Fund, the Rural Finance Fund, the Trust Fund for Investment and Stimulus to Cinema, the Sector Fund for Innovation, and the Fund for High Performance Sports.

The next step from Congress will be to send the approved bill to the Senate for study, analysis and discussion, so the fate of the trusts will remain uncertain, at least until the initiative is discussed in the Senate.

Monica Lozano Serrano, Director of the Mexican Academy of Film Arts and Sciences and Maria Novaro Peñaloza, Director of the Mexican Institute of Cinematography (IMCINE), in an interview on October 8, 2020 on “Debate 22”, a television program on the Federal Government’s official channel 22, commented that they had already held talks with SHCP, the Ministry of Economy, and the film community regarding the possible elimination of Fidecine. A budgetary program called Promotion of Mexican Cinema had already been contemplated in terms of the possible attributions to IMCINE, with the initiative to reform the Federal Law of Cinematography, and in this interview it was made known to the general public that:

1.The new budgetary program for subsidies will be subject to Operating Rules and citizen councils that will evaluate the projects in all calls for proposals.

2.That support will be given annually, among others, to the production and post-production of feature and short films; to exhibition spaces and the preservation of audiovisual assets.

3.The support for Mexican cinema will be given directly through IMCINE, and there will be eleven (11) annual calls grouped into three areas:

  • Eight (8) calls for production and post-production of feature films and short films
  • Two (2) calls for exhibition: spaces and projects for the formation of audiences and the exhibition of Mexican cinema.
  • One (1) call to support the creation and preservation of film and audiovisual archives.

4.IMCINE will continue to support script writing, story lines and project development, training/production programs for filmmakers and indigenous and Afro-descendant communities, short workshops and long-term community training projects, and the promotion of Mexican cinema on the authority’s platform and through its national and international outreach programs, among other areas of support.

5.The operational capacities of IMCINE will be strengthened while providing greater certainty about the budget allocated annually to support national cinema.

6.Likewise, a 10% guarantee for the release of national films in movie theaters was discussed, in compliance with international treaties.

7.The implementation of coercive or stimulating systems by IMCINE so that there is content of national production in platforms, restricted and open television, was also discussed.

IMCINE’s 2020-2024 Institutional Program, which was published on October 5, 2020 in the Official Journal of the Federation, establishes the following priority objectives:

  • Encourage cinematographic and audiovisual creation in all regions of the country through access to production grants, in an inclusive and equitable manner.
  • Guarantee the right of audiences throughout the national territory to access Mexican films and audiovisuals, through inclusive dissemination and exhibition schemes and the promotion of Mexican cultural diversity abroad.
  • To strengthen film and audiovisual development in the country’s regions and communities, with special attention to indigenous and Afro-Mexican peoples, new generations of filmmakers, projects for children, and communities in vulnerable situations.

The resources used for the implementation of the Institutional Program will be charged to IMCINE’s budget, authorized on an annual basis by Congress.

One of the most important effects of the present extinction of the trusts and the institutional program is that now the SHCP will be the one to decide on the origin of the resources related to the production and exhibition of films. Additionally, with the powers that will be granted to IMCINE, it will have technical and managerial autonomy.

OLIVARES will continue to actively monitor the situation, and our Partner Luis C. Schmidt and his team are available for any questions or advice that may be required.

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