Dundee West MSP Joe Fitzpatrick who has previously contacted UK Ministers to highlight the need for tax relief for the Computer Games sector has now lodged a motion calling on the Scottish Parliament to lobby the UK Government to implement such a tax break for game production in this years’ budget .
Mr FitzPatrick raised this issue previously with UK Ministers and held a members’ debate in the Scottish Parliament earlier this year on tax breaks for the UK gaming sector. The MSP’s move parallels the move by Tom Watson – the Labour MP for West Bromwich East – who has moved a similar motion at Westminster (Early Day Motion 934) – which has support from Labour, SNP, Tory and Lib Dem MPs calling on the Chancellor of the Exchequer to introduce tax relief for the video games industry.
A recent report by the games industry body TIGA shows that unless a similar tax regime to Canada and France is introduced in the UK it could lead to a decline in the industry. Foreign competitors in the United States of America, Canada and South Korea all offer major tax breaks at either national or regional level for game production or other substantial government financial support
Commenting on his move, Joe FitzPatrick said: “The TIGA Report shows that Dundee could lose 200 jobs if the UK Government fails to implement tax breaks over the next 5 years, while introducing tax incentives would create 350 Graduate level Jobs and £45 million of extra investment in Dundee over the next 5 years.
“It also shows that over five years the tax measure would cost an estimated £192 million but would deliver £415 million in tax receipts.
“Although the Chancellor ignored the Games Sector’s demands in his pre-budget Report, over the last 12 months virtually every industry expert has championed tax relief on research and development for computer games as a way to create jobs and boost revenue.”