In case you’ve been living under a rock, a rock so deep and dense that it’s near our Earth’s core, the people of Britain voted to leave the European Union. It was synonymously nicknamed Brexit. This means a lot of economical and cultural changes but where does that leave UK video game developers? Dr. Richard Wilson of TIGA has an idea and an outline for the video game industry within Brexit’s borders.
Quick background on TIGA and Dr. Wilson. TIGA is a trade association that represents developers and other parties within the video game industry. They do this by campaigning for the industry in the media and outlets of power. It’s CEO, Richard Wilson, has successfully campaigned and lobbied on a plethora of platforms for the industry as a whole. Today, he published Brexit: Priorities of the UK Video Games Industry. It is basically a report that sets out policies and agendas for the government and policy makers of the UK as it leaves the EU.
The whole report is twenty pages long but boils down to these ten points
1. The UK needs a favourable tax environment to encourage businesses to invest in the UK. The Government should consider:
- reducing the rate of corporation tax to 17 per cent in 2017;
- enhancing Video Games Tax Relief and the R&D Tax Relief.
2. Access to finance: The UK Government should:
- introduce a Video Games Investment Fund to enable more studios to grow; and
- increase the amount of money that a company can raise via SEIS investment from £150,000 to £200,000.
3. Access to talent: The UK Government should:
- ensure that EU workers already working in the UK are protected so that they can continue to work in the UK with the confidence that they are not going to be asked to leave the UK in the future.
4. Exports, trade agreements and tariffs: The UK Government should:
- negotiate a trade deal with the EU that to the greatest possible extent avoids quotas, tariffs and other barriers to trade.
5. VAT: The UK Government should:
- negotiate an EU wide measure to exempt small businesses from EU VAT regulations.
6. Intellectual Property: The UK Government should:
- consider introducing arrangements for the conversion or extension of a EU trademark or registered community design to cover the UK.
7. Data Protection: The UK Government should consider:
- adopting the General Data Protection Regulation to ensure that companies based in the UK and doing business in the EU can continue to smoothly transfer information and data.
8. Higher Education: The UK Government should:
- make up any short-fall in funding following the UK’s departure from the EU.
9. Fiscal policy: The UK Government should consider:
- increasing investment in infrastructure to cushion the UK from the shock of Brexit.
10. Skills and Training: The UK Government could consider:
- extending the life of the Skills Investment Fund to maximise investment in skills in the creative industries.
More can be found out about TIGA, its CEO, and all the hard work they do here.