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Ottawa's $500M Netflix deal draws reaction from incumbents
30 September 2017, 03:52 | Francis Delgado
Netflix has committed to a five-year C$500 million spend on Canadian original programming and will pay no local taxes as a result
"We want them to participate in our goals to support the creation and discovery of Canadian content that showcases our talent, our cultures and our stories", she said.
Federal Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly is defending the $500-million Netflix deal after coming under fire in Quebec for its apparent lack of specific funding for original French-language productions.
The $500 million in original productions in Canada over the next five years would be through the newly created NetflixCanada production company (not to be confused with NetflixCanada the service). The streaming company will also work with Canadian creators to produce content in both English and French. It will establish a permanent production presence in Canada, the first time it has done so outside of the United States. It explained that, during the consultation, "many Canadian stakeholders asked about how new players can contribute to Canadian content".
Facebook, Netflix, Spotify, YouTube, and other online firms reach Canadians directly, outside of Canada's regulated broadcast system.
The Canadian government is pledging not to tax television streaming services as Netflix creates a Canadian division and commits to a minimum investment in the country.
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"Our government won't increase the cost of these services to Canadians by imposing a new tax", Joly said.
Other commentators have pointed out Netflix has previously claimed to spend "hundreds of millions" of Canadian dollars on local productions.
Canada's Heritage Minister, Melanie Joly, said the deal "signals a meaningful partnership in supporting Canadian creators, producers and Canadian creative work, and in bringing that work to millions of viewers around the world".
The company has already co-produced a handful of Canadian television series with public broadcaster CBC and others, including Anne, based on the novelAnne of Green Gables, and Canadian author Margaret Atwood's Alias Grace. No figure is available, but Joly says top-ups from Ottawa will start next year to cover the shortfall.
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Similarly, it can be extremely hard for doctors to distinguish between complications caused by miscarriage and induced abortion. Without legal access to abortions, women are too often left without the option of safety.