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Labour cabinet reshuffle sees Harman take DCMS role

TIGA applauds changes which see Deputy Leader take responsibility for games, Tom Watson promoted to deputy chair

Harriet Harman, Labour's deputy leader, has become the shadow minister for the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, in opposition to Ed Vaizey.

Tom Watson, a vocal supporter of gaming and the games industry, has been promoted to deputy party chair and campaign co-ordinator, largely as a result of his prominent role in the News International phone hacking scandal.

Promising Labour Party hopeful Chuka Umunna takes responsibility for the shadow brief of Business, Innovation and Skills, another role with potential influence on the games industry.

"Labour's Shadow Cabinet reshuffle is good for the video games industry," TIGA CEO Richard Wilson told

"Harriet Harman is a big hitter and immensely experienced. As Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport she will certainly hold the Government front bench team to account."

"The appointment of Chukka Umunna MP to the position of Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills is positive. He is a rising star in the Labour Party.

Wilson also reserved special praise for Tom Watson, who was instrumental in the founding of consumer body Gamers' Voice, as well as lending consistent support to TIGA's tax relief lobbying.

"The appointment of Tom Watson MP to the position of Labour Party Deputy Chair and Campaign Coordinator is excellent news and is very well deserved. Tom is an enthusiastic supporter of the video games industry and a strong advocate of Games Tax Relief and other measures to help the sector. It is great to have Tom in a position where he can champion the industry in senior political circles."

This is the first Labour reshuffle which has given the party leader a free hand in selecting minsters and secretaries of state directly, following a party vote to remove the electoral stage of the process earlier this year.

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Dan Pearson