Friday 24th August/...ELSPA, the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association, today welcomed comments from Government and Opposition ministers about the cultural and fiscal importance of the UK video and computer games industry.
At the same time ELSPA re-affirmed the need for central Government to engage seriously with the industry in regard to the increasing international competition it faces from other territories which offer significant financial and tax incentives on inward investment.
Speaking to industry trade paper MCV this week, Conservative Party Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Jeremy Hunt and Labour Party Minister for Culture, Creative Industries and Tourism, Margaret Hodge, discussed the Games Industry in the UK.
Hunt called for more Government support for the industry saying,“…the UK video games industry is obviously a vitally important part of our economy. The Government needs to do all it can to support the video games sector and allow it to flourish.”
He suggested Government could initiate support for the industry during periods of heavy international competition for inward investment, noting:“Tax breaks for the games industry…could go some way to remedying this situation.”
For its part, the Government’s Secretary of State for Culture, Creative Industries and Tourism, Margaret Hodge said:“There are…many visible challenges facing the UK games industry…greater competition…the problem of protecting intellectual property rights effectively…”.
In a wide-ranging piece she added:“The Creative Economy Programme is exploring how the Government can support the creative industries in general. This will examine market drivers such as skills, innovation and competition. The video games industry is a significant sector within this work.”
Hodge added:“…we have definitely begun to more fully recognise and articulate the contribution that video games make to the UK economy as a whole”.
Paul Jackson, Director General ELSPA, said,“ELSPA read with interest that both the Government and Opposition recognise the importance of the industry and the challenges we face. We look forward to continuing our dialogue and presenting effective solutions to all political stakeholders when Parliament returns in October.”
The full interviews in MCV can be read online at www.mcvuk.com
About ELSPA - http://www.elspa.com
ELSPA (The Entertainment&Leisure Software Publishers Association) was founded in 1989 to establish a specific and collective identity for the computer and video games industry. Membership includes almost all companies concerned with the publishing and distribution of interactive leisure software in the UK.