2015-16 New eligible drama expenditure scheme results | ACMA

2015-16 New eligible drama expenditure scheme results

Compliance 2015–16

The subscription television industry spent $51.2 million on Australian and New Zealand drama programs in the 2015–16 financial year. This expenditure met the minimum obligations under the new eligible drama expenditure scheme and is a record high, an increase of over $14 million on the previous high of $36.81 million in 2013–14.

Participants in the scheme fully acquitted the outstanding 2014–15 expenditure obligation of $15.44 million and nominated $27.21 million towards their 2015–16 expenditure obligations. There remains an aggregated shortfall of $2.44 million in 2016–17 that participants must acquit to remain compliant with the minimum expenditure obligations. This is the smallest aggregated shortfall in the last five years.

In 2015-16, expenditure on Australian programs included feature films such as Paper Planes, Mad Max: Fury Road, Fat Pizza vs Housos, The Infinite Man, Charlie's Country, and Ruben Guthrie, as well as drama series including Top of the Lake, Deadline Gallipoli, Secret City, Wentworth, and The Kettering Incident. While children’s drama produced under the scheme this year included Balloon Barnyard, Mako Mermaids and Nowhere Boys Movie.

  2011-12 ($ mill) 2012-13 ($ mill) 2013-14 ($ mill) 2014-15 ($ mill) 2015-16 ($ mill)

New eligible drama expenditure requirement






Expenditure on new eligible drama                    






Expenditure nominated to make-up previous year's shortfall






Expenditure nominated towards current year's 10 per cent requirement






Remaining obligation to be acquitted in the next financial year 






Background: drama channels and providers in 2015–16

Participating drama channels were: 111 Funny, 13 Street, BBC First, Boomerang, Box Sets, Cbeebies, Cartoon Network, Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Disney XD, Fox 8, Fox Classics, Foxtel Movies, FX, Nickelodeon, SyFy, Showcase, SoHo, Turner Classic Movies, TV Hits, UKTV and Universal.

Subscription television licensees broadcasting drama channels were: Foxtel Cable Television, Optus, Selectra (Austar), Telstra, TransACT and Fetch TV.

Participating channel providers were: BBC Worldwide Australia, Fox Network Group Australia; Foxtel Management; Nickelodeon Australia and The Walt Disney Company Australia.

Pass-through providers were: NBC Universal Global Networks Australia and Turner Broadcasting Systems.

For expenditure to qualify under the scheme, the investment must be for a production that meets the definition of an 'eligible drama program'. The scheme establishes a requirement to spend on Australian drama programs and there is no obligation on a subscription television licensee to broadcast the drama program.

The Broadcasting Services Act 1992 defines a subscription television drama service as a service devoted predominantly to drama programs.

Last updated: 05 March 2019