The aims of this Convention are to promote the development of European multilateral cinematographic co-production, to safeguard creation and freedom of expression and defend the cultural diversity of the various European countries.
In order to obtain co-production status, the work must involve at least three co-producers, established in three different Parties to the Convention. The participation of one or more co-producers who are not established in such Parties is possible, provided that their total contribution does not exceed 30% of the total cost of the production. The co-produced work must also meet the definition of a European cinematographic work set forth in Appendix II to the Convention.
Once these conditions have been fulfilled, the Convention assimilates all co-productions, which have been given the prior approval of the competent authorities of the Parties, with national films; i.e. they are entitled to the benefits granted to the latter. The Convention also covers the following: the minimum and maximum proportions of contributions from each co-producer; the right of each co-producer to co-ownership of the original, the picture and the sound; the general balance of investments and compulsory artistic and technical participation; the measures to be taken by the Parties to facilitate the production and export of the cinematographic work and the right of each Party to demand a final version of the cinematographic work in one of the languages of that Party.