SAZ calls for a VAT taxation of games equal to that of other cultural goods

Games are a valuable cultural asset and have a high social significance. Facilitated access to this cultural property is therefore absolutely worthy of promotion.

The social function of games is expressed in many forms. Games have accompanied humanity since the beginning. They serve the pastime, the intellectual stimulation and challenge, the transfer of knowledge and skills, the social gathering, the cohesion in families and can also play an important role in the integration of people from other cultures into our society.

The requirement to tax analogue games with the reduced tax rate (7% in Germany) is, on the one hand, the logical consequence of our demand to include games in the collection catalog of the German National Library – and, of course, to National Libraries in other countries too.

On the other hand, it seems illogical if the fees for authors (at least in Germany) are always taxed at the reduced rate, the products generated from them, such as books and e-books, concerts and music CDs, as well as games, are only partially or not at all subject to this reduced rate.

We therefore suggest that the German Bundestag, the national parliaments in Europe and the European Parliament should create for cultural goods a uniform, preferential arrangement.

In the first step, we were able to win the support of the German game publishers association, Spieleverlage e.V., to call for a VAT taxation of games equal to that of books and other cultural goods!

In a second step, SAZ and Spieleverlage e.V. have submitted an application in the section Socio-Culture and Cultural Education in the German Cultural Council. This motion was approved on November 14, 2017, and forwarded to the Spokesman's Council of the German Cultural Council for resolution.

April 2018: The Tax Committee of the German Cultural Council currently sees no political basis for this demand, but recommends naming concrete projects for financial support, which can then be included in a list of demands of the German Cultural Council to the German Federal Government and the German Bundestag. Nevertheless, we will continue to follow up this demand in the long term.