TORONTO, April 14 /CNW/ - The Entertainment Software Association of Canada (ESAC) today released a paper entitled "Game On, Canada! Playing to Win in the Digital Economy". The paper calls for a comprehensive digital strategy with content industries at its heart, which will better position Canada as a competitor in the global digital economy. The release of this paper is in response to the announcement in the federal government's recent Speech from the Throne that it would develop and launch a Digital Economy Strategy in order to foster "a strong digital economy (that) will contribute to a more prosperous and competitive Canada".
"While technological infrastructure is clearly important, ESAC's paper positions content and content creation as central to the digital economy's future prospects," said Danielle LaBossière Parr, ESAC Executive Director. "Content drives technology adoption, and we strongly urge government to include content industries as a central pillar of its digital economy strategy."
The ESAC's digital economy strategy covers a number of issues crucial to Canadian competitiveness. Taken together, these solutions would not only benefit the Canadian video game industry, but would position Canada as a more competitive jurisdiction in which to invest. Specifically, ESAC is recommending that the federal government should:
1. Include content industries at the heart of its digital strategy;
2. Recognize video game production as central to Canada's digital
3. Adopt a plan to develop and retain cutting edge talent;
4. Improve digital literacy through education and awareness;
5. Attract and retain foreign workers and eliminate barriers to labour
6. Generate new sources of capital and investment in commercialization;
7. Protect intellectual property through reform of the copyright system;
8. Create more affordable, accessible and faster digital infrastructure;
9. Foster free and open international trade; and
10. Carefully consider the impact of new regulations on the digital
economy and examine the role of related government institutions.
"In a rapidly changing knowledge economy, Canada has the potential to emerge as a world leader provided that we adopt forward-thinking strategies to increase our competitiveness and enact policies to support our digital industries," added LaBossière Parr. "The Canadian video game industry creates some of the best-selling video games in the world, however we must work together with government to ensure that we maintain the high paying and highly skilled jobs that have been created here, and that could still be created as this industry continues to grow," she added.
The ESAC is the voice of the dynamic and growing video and computer game industry in Canada. Association members include the nation's leading interactive entertainment software developers and publishers including Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, Activision Blizzard, Microsoft Canada, Nintendo of Canada, Sony Computer Entertainment, Disney Interactive Studios, THQ and Take Two Interactive, as well as distributors Solutions2Go and Team One Marketing. Together, they collectively accounted for more than 90 per cent of the $2 billion in retail sales of entertainment software and hardware in Canada in 2009, and billions more in export sales worldwide.
To read a copy of ESAC's digital strategy, visit: www.theesa.ca.
SOURCE Entertainment Software Association of Canada
For further information: For further information: visit ESAC's web site or contact: Julien Lavoie, Director, Public Relations, ESAC, (416) 620-7171 ext. 248