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UK government must act, says TIGA CEO Wilson

TIGA CEO Richard Wilson thinks the UK government must act promptly to address the unfair trade situation

The unfair trade situation is an urgent problem that needs to be addressed says TIGA CEO Richard Wilson.

"...If we want to remain a major player, then the government has to do something about this issue; and indeed the opposition parties need to understand that this is an important issue," he told GamesIndustry.biz

Wilon noted that there are numerous schemes in Quebec to subsidise game developers - in some cases, substantially - which has led to UK business relocating to Canada.

TIGA's CEO thinks that there is reluctance to offer tax breaks or subsidies to particular industries dating back to the 1970's when the government supported the automobile industry and tried to pick winners.

"But we're in a very different environment now, and if we want the UK to continue to be a success story, then the government has got to bring forward measures that are specifically helpful to that particular sector," he said.

The Treasury is still reeling from the fallout of what Wilson called a major economic catastrophe which started in the US, making it challenging to lobby for the games industry when ministers are under pressure.

"But I do think that ministers, and key civil servants in BERR and the DCMS do appreciate the industry, and think it's important," Wilson said.

Despite the recent Budget, which he described as a missed opportunity, Wilson remains committed to addressing the issue.

"...I think we need to redouble our efforts, I think we need to continue to hammer home the message that tax breaks are important for games development - particularly when we quite clearly haven't got a level, competitive playing field."

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