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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-16668: Tavish Scott (Shetland Islands)

Scottish Liberal Democrats

Date lodged: 15 May 2018

To ask the Scottish Government, in light of the evidence given by witnesses to the Culture, Tourism, Europe and External Relations Committee on 19 April 2018, including the comment that "[the film] industry is very different from the other things that Creative Scotland does" (Official Report, c. 15), what its position is on whether there should be a dedicated Scottish film unit that is separate from Creative Scotland.

Answered by: Fiona Hyslop 31 May 2018

Our focus is on strong immediate support for the screen sector and the establishment of a separate body, particularly when there is a government presumption against creating further public bodies given the cost, time and bureaucracy involved, could delay and disrupt progress achieved to date.

In addition to this, the Scottish Government is recruiting for up to three new members of the Creative Scotland board with screen industry experience. There has been strong industry engagement throughout the development of the screen unit and this continues.

The new screen unit will have industry expertise at every level and its executive will have the autonomy to act decisively to meet business opportunities. Creative Scotland is recruiting people with established screen sector experience to lead and work within the Screen Unit including a new Executive Director to lead the unit who will have current screen experience. There are also three industry representatives now on the advisory Screen Committee: SSLG Chair John McCormick; David Strachan of Tern; and Gillian Berrie of Sigma Films.

The Scottish Government is committed to increasing and improving support for the screen sector to help our film and television companies seize new opportunities. This is why we have committed an additional £10 million to screen development, production and growth this year. We want to maximise the effect of our public spending and a dedicated screen unit within Creative Scotland is currently being established by Creative Scotland and our enterprise and skills agencies to better align public sector support and support skills development, investment and business growth.