Québec reaffirms its commitment to support the written press

Québec réaffirme son engagement à soutenir la presse écrite

Recognizing that the market is undermined by a significant decrease in advertising revenues, the government of Québec reiterates its commitment to support the sector of the written press.

Quebec “goes further” by offering a refundable tax credit to the print media who continue their transition to digital, estimated the minister of Culture, Marie Montpetit.

“I’ve been challenged especially by the message that has been launched by the media on the difficulties, on the crisis that is lived in this moment because of the shift in advertising revenues to the big players” of the Web, which account for approximately 65% of the total advertising revenues of newspapers, commented on Tuesday, Ms. Montpetit.

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The minister, however, refuses to engage directly with his counterpart in Ottawa, Mélanie Joly, the federal government will follow the same path as that announced by the province.

“The federal government has not taken this route, but for us, it was fundamental to support the written press,” responded Mrs. Montpetit to the announcement of the budget 2018-2019.

Asked if she wanted to communicate its concerns to the minister Joly after the release of the budget, Marie Montpetit, responded that his counterpart in Ottawa will be “in the know” at the end of the day Tuesday and that she will be able to take decisions accordingly”.

$ 64.7 million $ over five years

The tax credit provided for in the budget 2018-2019 government is in addition to other support measures that have been announced in the last few months. An announcement to this effect had also been made in the government’s budget for the year 2017.

The credit, which totals an amount of $ 64.7 million $ over five years, will enable a media company to benefit from the tax assistance may reach a maximum of $ 7 million. In detail, the eligible expenditures to a maximum of $ 20 million will be reimbursed to the extent of 35%. The credit is refundable, which means that a company, even if it does not save income tax, can still benefit from the tax measure.

For the minister Montpetit, this credit represents a way “to support the industry in a completely independent way”, since it applies to all media eligible who request it.

Group capital cities Media satisfied

In response to the measure provided for in the budget, the chairman of the Group capital cities Media, and editor of the Sun, Claude Gagnon, welcomed the initiative of the government, the only one in the country to make clear its willingness to support the written press, the judge said it.

“The government asks some of the right things, and he recognizes that we need help,” commented Mr. Gagnon. “It would be nice if the federal government expressed the same willingness,” he continued.

Mr. Gagnon has signified his desire to take the time to analyze the details of the tax credit announced before commenting further. “We’re going to do with the department how it will operate,” he concluded.

In a statement, The Duty expresses have welcomed the measure announced by the government. “This program puts Québec at the forefront of nations that have realized the importance of supporting the transition to digital media. Eligible expenses stop at the threshold of the newsroom. The journalistic independence will therefore not be affected”, commented the director of the Duty, Brian Myles.

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