UK’s Video Game Tax Relief scheme has awarded £324m since 2014

According to HMRC’s latest Creative Industries Statistics, over 1,000 claims have been made against Video Game Tax Relief (VGTR) since its introduction in 2014.

In a press release from Ukie, the UK’s only trade body for the UK’s games and interactive entertainment industry, 1,110 claims have received a total of £324m in tax relief to date, which has “supported £2.6bn investment in British content, highlighting the invaluable government and public support provided by the scheme”. 

While the support for games has remained broadly the same, in the 2018-2019 period alone claims were up 12.6 per cent year-over-year, with 535 games benefitting from the scheme and £103m awarded in tax relief. 

Credit: Ukie

“Importantly, more than half of claims successfully made under VGTR represented figures totalling £50,000 or less,” the press release said. “This demonstrates that the relief provides crucial support to smaller projects, strengthening the industry’s grass roots along with its international reach.”

“The Creative Industries Statistics once again show how widely Video Game Tax Relief supports video game and interactive entertainment businesses across the UK,” said  Dr Jo Twist OBE, CEO of Ukie. “We’re really pleased to see that the number of games supported by VGTR continues to increase, that the number of successful claims since its introduction has crossed the one thousand project mark and that it supports a diverse range of games of differing shapes, genres and sizes. 

“However, we must continue to encourage businesses to claim relief in the coming years. Video Game Tax Relief supports creative projects across the country, creating jobs and driving significant value add for the economy. It is in the interest of our sector that companies continue to apply for it and use the relief to drive investment across the UK.”  

For out more about claiming Video Game Tax Relief, check out Ukie’s Access to Finance guide here.

In related news, a recent report by investigative think tank TaxWatch UK states Grand Theft Auto V developer, Rockstar North – which is thought to have generated around £4 billion in operating profit between 2013 and 2019 – has not paid UK corporation tax in the last ten years. The report also accuses the company of claiming more than £42 million in tax relief during that time – allegedly 19 per cent of the total tax relief paid to the entire UK video game industry since 2014.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond, including Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, IGN, MTV, and Variety.

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