TIGA Chief Blames U.K. Government for Tax Scandal

TIGA Chief Blames U.K. Government for Tax Scandal

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The head of TIGA, the trade association for game developers in the U.K., says the collapse of planned tax breaks for game companies is the fault of the government, not shadowy saboteurs, although he allowed that shadow saboteurs might actually be out there.

Eyebrows were raised high yesterday when a report came out that the decision to scrap planned tax cuts for the U.K.'s game industry was made not just because of the newly-elected government but because "[one] of the biggest game companies in the world" had actively sabotaged efforts to make it happen. The original report didn't, and to this point hasn't, named names, but said the information came from "multiple, very trusted sources."

But while we all wait breathlessly to see where that finger points, the head of The Independent Game Developers Association, better known as TIGA, is pinning the blame squarely on the government. "What I would say is the key thing is, rather than to look for any scapegoat in the industry at home or aboard, for Machiavellian machinations going on in the background, to focus on the Conservative party and the Liberal Democrats," Richard Wilson told GamesIndustry. "They both promised before the election they would give us games tax relief. We want them to honor that commitment."

Wilson did admit that the videogame industry likely wasn't entirely of one mind on the matter and that there might in fact be some kind of cigarette-smoking man lurking on the periphery. "If there was a sinister man in the shadows and he or she snapped their fingers, then it wouldn't say a great deal for our political leaders," he said. He also insisted that even if such anti-industry efforts were taking place, they'd be doomed to failure in the long run. "Even if there is... or has been a publisher arguing against games tax relief, they're not going to win. We've won the argument. We're going to continue with the arguments, and we are going to get it established," he added.

The videogame industry in the U.K. has long lobbied for tax relief from the government, claiming that tax breaks available in other nations has resulted in an unbalanced playing field that has badly damaged its domestic game development industry. Canada in particular is often cited as a virtual tax haven for game developers; in 2007, the U.K. kicked around the idea of complaining to the World Trade Organization about Canada's tax policies before admitting that it had "no legal grounds" to do so. Canada recently passed the U.K. to become the third-largest game-making country in the world, behind only the U.S. and Japan.

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And knocking us into 4th...this could have helped us climb back up, but, dosnt look likely now, which is a shame.

The government of course needs to deal with the debt, and, I am bias in this whole arguement, but, the tax break could have brouight so much more money into the industry, and in term, in taxes

All I can say is that my brain is overloading right now. Well, if they are too stupid to realize how big gaming is going to be and what an amazing entertaiment medium it is, your problem. We keep gaming and spending less and less time infront of TV watching crap.

WE WANT GAMES!

TIGA insult my government? I think NOT! I can do that myself, thank you very much.

Also, cheap games plz?

i blame piracy.......

but anyway i live in the u.k and i would love to see more developers here especially as im gonna study games design at uni later this year and i think it would probably help with introducing people into the industry with something like digipen that they have in the u.s

next Russia will overtake us with all their awesome devs they have there

RoboGeek:
i blame piracy.......

but anyway i live in the u.k and i would love to see more developers here especially as im gonna study games design at uni later this year and i think it would probably help with introducing people into the industry with something like digipen that they have in the u.s

next Russia will overtake us with all their awesome devs they have there

I am also liking a lot of Russian games, but they need to work on their localization to the global market.

I have mixed opinions on the entire video game thing in the UK. As I've said before I think it's political (whether people think I've overthinking it or not). I can however see the point to some extent with the change in employment standards (giving temporary and freelance ermployees more protection in general) combined with loss of a tax break that might have helped to balance that out for one of the industries that will be hit hard.

We'll see what happens, but truthfully I'm not entirely convinced this is a bad move (as you might guess from my comments in another, related thread).

Love how im playing both Dues Ex games while this is all unfolding. I blame Majestic 12!!

Cuts are happening across the board in the UK right now and VAT is shooting up. If there is money for tax breaks in this industry there is money to lessen the cull in other areas. There are higher priorities that the games industy.

Having said that there is going to be bias on the forums of a gaming magazine.

After reading this story I couldnt help but wonder "Does Cerberus exist?"

Sounds an awful lot like cerberus when he was talking about a shadowy man with a cig... We need a Paragon fighting for tax relief!

Our current Tory government is cutting the budget so severely that 500 000 people are likely to lose their jobs. Tax relief for the game industry is not possible

 

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