ELSPA reeling from games tax U-turn

UK publisher association ELSPA has understandably aired its disappointment at the Cob-LibDem government’s withdrawal of tax breaks for games production.

But the organisation has said the move should only make the industry more determined to take advantage of policies and schemes that will support its businesses.

In statement ELSPA general director Michael Rawlinson said: "Bearing in mind the pre election commitment towards tax breaks made by the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats we are extremely disappointed by the outcome of today’s Budget.

"Our industry will be rightly puzzled as to how tax breaks can be lauded before an election, only to be seen as ‘poorly targeted’ and scrapped just six weeks later."

Rawlinson said the move makes sense given the wider issues regarding the UK deficit the Government wants to address, but that the snub for video games still leaves a sting.

He added:"We understand that this decision has been made in the context of the current economic climate.

"Yet the Chancellor today spoke of the need for a more balanced economy. If this is to be attained the government must acknowledge that the creative industries are of vital importance. Therefore in the absence of tax breaks it is the essential that the government work with our industry to ensure that the policies which we have outlined – such as addressing the skills gap and better access to R&D initiatives – are implemented."

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