IGEA has made a submission to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) to support Australia’s negotiation of a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the European Union (EU).
Australia commenced its negotiation of a FTA with the EU on 18 June 2018. The EU is one of Australia’s largest export markets, sources of investment and trading partners. The EU is important for Australian game developers, with a survey conducted in 2018 identifying Europe as the second most important overseas market for revenue behind North America.
IGEA has had discussions with DFAT and worked with its game development members to make a submission that urges DFAT to consider opportunities for strengthening the free and open trade of digital goods and services like games. The submission highlights three issues that are particularly important for Australia’s video games sector:
- Reducing barriers to digital trade by ensuring there are no tariffs or data localisation requirements
- Reducing barriers to investment and travel, including by liberalising investment rules and visa requirements
- The importance of maintaining strong copyright protections for content creators like Australian game developers
Negotiations on the FTA is likely to be a lengthy, multi-stage process. IGEA will continue to monitor progress and engage in dialogue with DFAT.