UK game industry trade bodies TIGA and UKIE have welcomed today’s long-awaited news that games tax breaks have been approved by the European Commission.
After a year-long investigation into the matter, the EC announced today all its concerns over tax relief in the UK had been dispelled by the industry, and that it could now go ahead with legislation.
TIGA CEO Richard Wilson said the incentives would lead to a £188m of additional investment for UK developers over the next five years, and would level the playing field in the global games market.
UKIE’s Jo Twist stated tax breaks were a huge boost to the country’s games sector, and called it the start of "a great new era of games production in the UK".
“We are extremely happy to have played a part, as a strong collective voice for the industry, to get the scheme over the finishing line. We have been in constant contact with government throughout the process and have applied pressure and evidence for the scheme to be introduced at every opportunity," said Twist.
“I’d like to thank all the hundreds of games companies and individuals across the country who have worked so hard collectively and who have played such a crucial role in getting to this point. The next strategic priority for us now is in applying pressure in different ways so that games businesses can access more programmes which support access to international markets, training and finance so we can be fully recognised as a sector that can lead the world again.”
TIGA’s Richard Wilson said: “This is a superb decision by the EU Commission and magnificent news for the UK video games industry. It is also a striking success for TIGA, for its members, and for the wider video games industry that TIGA represents. GTR will create jobs, boost investment and enable the production of more British video games.
“TIGA responded to the EU’s formal investigation into GTR, and built a compelling case which demonstrated that: video games are cultural products similar to other audio-visual creations and so merit support; that the UK video game industry is competing on an un-level playing field because our key global competitors already benefit from tax relief or other forms of government support; that GTR is necessary and proportionate in design, and that it achieves all of these results without distorting trade and competition within the EU."