Ukie calls for industry input into State Aid Cultural Test consultation

1 October 2012 - London, United Kingdom – Games and interactive entertainment trade body Ukie has today urged the games industry to give their input in to a consultation that will be an important step to getting European clearance for the UK’s video games production tax relief scheme.

Following an earlier consultation (concluded last month) that gathered input into how the production tax relief process would work for UK games companies, the State Aid Consultation published today (and found here) asks for industry input into a  Cultural Test that games will be required to pass before becoming eligible for UK production tax relief. Ukie also met with Tiga during this process to collaborate and agree on a common definition for “games” that would qualify for relief.

The Cultural Test will be points based and will ask questions such as whether the game contains British and European cultural elements and whether it has British or European talent in lead roles of the production and for technical innovation.

Ukie have also announced that they will be giving the industry, including non-Ukie members, multiple ways of helping to shape the questions:

  • Games businesses can fill out an online questionnaire found here
  • They can also send input on the cultural test to consultations@ukie.org.uk or search for Ukie on Facebook
  • Ukie will hold seminars at its offices to find out more about the proposals and give businesses the chance to give feedback. Seminar dates are on the afternoons of 16 and 23 of October. You can book a place at one of these seminars at consultations@ukie.org.uk
Under European law, countries cannot introduce tax incentives that give advantages to them over other member states. But the European Commission accepts that countries should be free to support and protect their own particular culture and so does allow tax incentives that add to the cultural output of a country. This is how existing film and games tax credits are currently allowed and this is why the UK system similarly needs to prove that games are cultural products.

Ukie CEO, Dr Jo Twist said “The need to qualify as a cultural product is necessary if we want to get an efficient UK tax production credit scheme working as quickly as possible – and that is the ultimate goal. These questions and this crucial test are so important to get right, so that we can make the UK the best place to make games and interactive entertainment.”

“It is vital that UK games businesses respond  to this consultation. We shall be making sure that everyone has the chance to have their say. So whether you’re a Ukie member or not, please sign up for one of our sessions or send us your comments on the cultural test to consultations@ukie.org.uk, comment on  Ukie's Facebook page and  fill out the survey.”

-ENDS -

 

Contacts:

For all press enquiries, please contact the Ukie press office on T: +44 (0)20 7534 0580 or E: press@ukie.org.uk

About Ukie

The Association for United Kingdom Interactive Entertainment or Ukie (pronounced YOU-KEY) is a trade body that aims to support, grow and promote the whole of the UK’s games and interactive entertainment industry. Founded in 2010 (although formerly known as ELSPA), Ukie’s membership includes all the major UK and global games publishers and the best of UK development talent - from promising start-ups to some of the biggest, most successful studios operating in the UK today.

We also have distributors, academic institutions, new publishers, and media outlets that are integral to the lifeblood of the industry as part of the family.

Ukie works with government to champion a range of issues including age ratings, education and skills, access to finance and protecting intellectual property rights. It also works with the media to ensure true and accurate representation of the sector by raising awareness of the industry’s positive economic contribution and the societal benefits of gaming to policy makers, regulators and consumers.

One of Ukie’s key roles is to support its members by providing them with key market information, promoting careers and offering the business support services, training and best-practice knowledge to enable them to operate most effectively.

We also offer a comprehensive events programme to give the games industry access to key information, leading industry figures and give everyone the chance to network. You can see our events programme here http://ukie.org.uk/events

In addition, Ukie compiles weekly, monthly and annual retail charts and sales reports for the UK market.

Twitter: @Uk_ie

Facebook: Ukie  


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