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Osborne posits tax breaks for London NFL team

THE CHANCELLOR has raised the possibility of providing tax breaks to a potential London-based American football franchise as he promised the government would do “anything it can” to attract the NFL.

George Osborne has already held discussions with NFL officials over basing a team at Wembley Stadium, which will play host to a gridiron match on Sunday. Osborne described the prospect “a serious project”, City AM reports.

The discrepancy between UK’s higher top rate of income tax and that of the US had been cited as a major stumbling block for the project, but it has been suggested the Treasury could provide an exemption just as it did for the London 2012 Olympics.

The differing tax rates affect both salaries and sponsorship contracts of NFL stars.
“This is primarily a decision for the owners of the clubs and the BFL organisation, buut I’ve said to the NFL that anything the government can do to make this happen we will do, because I think it will be a huge boost to London,” the chancellor said.

“There are 32 teams in America and one of them could be a London team… I just think it will cement London as a sporting capital as well as a global financial and business and cultural capital.”

The NFL told City AM it was “very open and flexible” to ways of increasing its appeal, including through a London franchise.

Image credit: Action Sports Photography and Shutterstock.com

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