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6% minority language quota will not affect Netflix, HBO or Amazon Prime

Spanish cabinet bill, which only affects companies headquartered in Spain, stems from ERC-Socialist budget deal

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30 November 2021 08:20 PM

by

ACN | Madrid

The 6% minority language quota will only affect streaming platforms headquartered in Spain, not companies like Netflix, HBO, or Amazon Prime, as proposed by a Spanish government bill that is yet to be approved in Congress.

The bill, put forward by the Spanish government on Tuesday but yet to be passed by Congress, stems from an Esquerra-Socialist deal in exchange for the Catalan pro-independence party's support for Spain's 2022 budget

The deal formalized on November 23 established a 6% quota for Catalan, Basque, and Galician language programming on streaming platforms in addition to an extra €10.5 million to promote audiovisual content in the minority languages spoken in Spain.

Yet, after learning the fine print of the legislation, Esquerra threatened to not approve the 2022 spending plan in Spain or the audiovisual law unless Catalan language is guaranteed in all platforms. 

Initially, the Esquerra-Socialist audiovisual law agreement was set to force all streaming companies to offer half of the 30% of productions that must be European, according to EU regulation, in languages spoken in Spain – that is, 15% of the total, of which 40% was supposed to be in Catalan, Basque or Galician: 6% of all films and series and 20% of the European content.

If passed in Congress, the new regulation will only affect platforms such as Filmin or Movistar+, as their headquarters are based in Spain.

However, Filmin already offers 23% of its catalog in Catalan. In fact, since 2017, it also has Filmincat, a service in Catalan with 2,500 films and series available in the original version with subtitles or dubbed in Catalan.

Movistar+, the other streaming service with headquarters in Spain, already offers more than 300 movies and 40 series-seasons in original version with subtitles in Catalan. The platform also has 55 movies and 1 TV series in Catalan available for viewers.

Catalan accounts for less than 1% of the catalog on international streaming services.

Filling the Sink podcast

Catalan News published a podcast on Saturday looking into the situation of the Catalan language, especially in the audiovisual sector:  

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  • Filmin is one of the streaming platforms that will be affected by this law if it is approved (by Violeta Gumà)

  • Filmin is one of the streaming platforms that will be affected by this law if it is approved (by Violeta Gumà)

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