Netflix agrees C$500m originals deal with Canada

Federal government's Creative Canada policy heavy on digital media, with “adjustments” for Canada Book Fund

Joly said Netflix has committed CAD 500 million to fund Canadian productions over the coming five years and to build a permanent production presence in the country. The company will work extensively with Canadian producers and production firms to create original content in both English and French. The deal also supports Canadian French-language content on the Netflix platform.

Joly acknowledged the challenges posed by the digital age and said the government will focus on investing in and promoting Canadian producers. This has raised concerns over the loss of Canadian content, worries over how to compete with streaming services and calls for streaming taxes - with the proceeds going to fund Canadian programming.

She admitted that while some people, including Québecor head Pierre Karl Péladeau and Quebec spokesperson Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, aren't happy with the arrangement - she's confident Quebec-produced content won't be overlooked.

The company has largely avoided the requirements put on Canadian content producers by the country's government. Reactions from Canada's media providers are mixed, but more details about Netflix's deal with the Canadian government still needs to be revealed.

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This will be known as Netflix Canada, a "first of its kind production company".

She also said the recent rise in Netflix fees in Canada were not connected to the Liberals' new plan.

"Our government won't increase the cost of these services to Canadians by imposing a new tax", Joly said.

Joly had previously ruled out a "Netflix tax" during the consultation.

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Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos said investments like this one would give Canadian producers and creators more access to financing, business partners and ways to connect with audiences around the world.

As part of a swath of new cultural policies, Joly also announced new "cultural trade missions" overseas to help Canadian creators break into new markets.

"This is a welcome first step", she said of the Facebook collaboration.

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