Woodward appeals for fiscal incentives for Scotland’s creative sector

FISCAL incentives would help develop Scotland’s creative sector and establish Scotland’s creative industries on a global scale, according to the chief executive of STV.

Speaking this morning at an event looking at Glasgow’s media, Rob Woodward said that Scotland, in general, and Glasgow, in particular, has the opportunity to establish itself as a hub of creative excellence. But he warned too of a possible ‘brain drain’.

At the event, ‘Glasgow Talks’, hosted by the city’s Chamber of Commerce, Woodward said: “Scotland is blessed with a world-class creative talent set. Creativity is simply part of Scotland’s DNA, with centres of excellence across the country such as gaming in Dundee, advertising in Edinburgh, and TV and digital media in Glasgow. However, we need to ensure that Scotland competes in the global market. Otherwise, there will continue to be a drain of creative talent out of the country.”

He was joined by Global Radio’s Scottish MD, Paul Cooney, and Andrew Harries, editor of The Scottish Sun.

Woodward continued: “The future opportunity for Glasgow has to be to compliment the investment from the Public Service Broadcasters, but principally the BBC, by attracting new international investment in production. In my view this can only be achieved through providing some fiscal incentive such as the tax relief provided to filmmakers. Success will require us to focus on attracting new international money, rather than simply redistributing the existing dwindling funds of the PSBs.

“The prize for playing to our strength and ensuring that Scotland and Glasgow are equipped to play on the global stage is huge. However, it will take a lot of focus, hard work and appropriate financial incentive to ensure that this opportunity is realised for us in Glasgow.”

Meanwhile, The Drum media and marketing magazine was reporting the enthusiasm of the three speakers for possible collaboration.