Tax Relief for UK Games Developers “Most Generous in the World”

Published on December 5th, 2012

Chancellor Osbourne details tax aid to support “brilliant video games and animations industries.”

Tax Relief for UK Games Developers “Most Generous in the World”

"Are all your taxes paid up? We can always squeeze you for more, unless your a games developer."

During the autumn financial statement to British Parliament, Chancellor George Osbourne has detailed exactly what kind of UK games will be able to appeal for from April 2013.

“Following consultation on their design, the Government will ensure that the reliefs are among the most generous in the world by offering a payable tax credit for all three reliefs worth 25 per cent of qualifying expenditure,” reads an official statement from the treasury – picked up by gamesindustry.biz.

Games developers, along with other industries from the creative sector, will be able to “”choose between an additional deduction at a rate of 100 per cent of enhanceable expenditure or a payable tax credit at a rate of 25 per cent of qualifying losses surrendered.”

Osbourne previously delayed efforts to help the ailing UK games industry last year, but it’s great to see not only that the plans are back on the agenda, but that they’ll be implemented in only a matter of months. The UK games industry has been in decline over the past decade with more and more studios moving to countries like Canada who implement similar methods of tax relief, albeit on a much bigger scale.

“Tax breaks for games production will ensure that the UK remains a world leader in the high technology video games development industry. A single 25 per cent level of relief will be simple to administer and economically impactful,” reads a statement Dr Richard Wilson of TIGA.

“Yet we will have to monitor the actions of our competitors: the province of Quebec in Canada already boasts a 37.5 per cent level of tax relief,” said TIGA’s Dr Richard Wilson, who also hoped the measure would help make high skill, export focused industries a bigger player in the UK economy.”

We suspect the eligibility of this tax relief will depend on a studio’s efforts passing a cultural test which ensure a product is quintessentially British either in tone, story or application. Expect that Coronation Street interactive tie-in to arrive sooner than you think! Happy days!

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