The UK government has announced it will introduce a tax break policy for games development following years of impassioned campaigning.
Chancellor George Osborne revealed in his Budget speech that the games industry will benefit from a scheme similar to that currently enjoyed by the UK film industry, “subject to State aid approval and following consultation.”
No specific details have yet been announced.
The news has been joyously received by the UK industry, which has seen 44 studios shut down or leave the country since 2008.
TIGA, the trade association representing the UK Games Industry, called the Government’s announcement a “brilliant” decision and “terrific” news for the games development sector.
“Tax relief for the video games sector will increase employment, innovation and investment in the UK video games industry,” said CEO Dr Richard Wilson.
“Our research shows that Games Tax Relief should generate and safeguard: 4,661 direct and indirect jobs; £188 million in investment expenditure by studios; increase the games development sector’s contribution to UK GDP by £283 million; generate £172 million in new and protected tax receipts to HM Treasury, and could cost just £96 million over five years.”
Karl Hilton, MD of Crytek UK, added: “This is the right decision for the future of the UK games industry and consumers across the world who enjoy playing British made games. TIGA’s victory will enable the UK games sector to compete on a more even playing field. It will also promote the creation of high skilled jobs, enhance investment and stimulate an export focussed industry.”