In a very rare showing, Nintendo, Microsoft, and Sony have come together in a showing of solidarity against proposed tariffs on consoles manufactured in China. Linda K. Norman, vice president and deputy general counsel at Microsoft Corporation; Devon Pritchard, general counsel and executive vice president of business affairs at Nintendo of America; and Jennifer Liu, general counsel, senior vice president, legal and business affairs at Sony Interactive Entertainment, have published a 7-page document that aims to explain to President Trump just how damaging tariffs on game consoles made in China would be.
“While we appreciate the Administration’s efforts to protect U.S. intellectual property and preserve U.S. high-tech leadership, the disproportionate harm caused by these tariffs to U.S. consumers and businesses will undermine — not advance — these goals. Accordingly, we respectfully request that the Administration remove HTSUS subheading 9504.50.00, covering video game consoles, from the final list of tariffs, and thus refrain from applying tariffs on these products.
Economically, the video game industry contributes substantially to the U.S. economy, and its year-on-year growth is impressive. The U.S. video game industry generated total revenue of $36 billion in 20172 and $43.4 billion in 2018,3 reflecting over 20% in growth. This industry directly and indirectly employs more than 220,000 people. Ninety-nine point seven percent (99.7%) of video game companies qualify as small businesses and can be found in each of the fifty states; many develop software for video games across the range of platforms, from PCs to mobile, including the video game consoles that we manufacture, and are an integral part of the booming app economy.
If you want to read the entire 7-page filing, you can do so right here.