Press release

Government consultation on cultural test for video games, animation and high-end TV

Industry and Stakeholder opinion sought in design of cultural test necessary for the introduction of new tax reliefs for the creative sector

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

In the March 2012 Budget, the Chancellor announced that the Government will introduce corporation tax reliefs for the animation, high-end television and video games industries from April 2013, subject to State Aid approval from the European Commission.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) is now seeking views on a proposed test that will identify culturally British video games, animation and high end television that might be considered eligible for the new tax relief.

Video games, animation and high-end television play an important role in British culture and present a major opportunity for economic growth. In providing tax relief, the Government is seeking to promote the sustainable production of culturally British product/content by:

  • Encouraging the production of video games, animation and high-end television  that might not otherwise be made

  • Promoting sustainability in these sectors

  • Maintaining a critical mass of UK infrastructure, creative and technical expertise, to facilitate the production of culturally British video games, animation and high-end television

The proposal is to award points for those elements that contribute to the overall cultural value of a video game, animation or high-end television programme. When considering the possible design of the cultural tests for tax relief for each sector , the test currently applying to the UK’s existing - and very successful - film tax relief offered a useful starting point as did the cultural dimension of tax credits in other countries.

Creative Industries Minister Ed Vaizey said:

“Government is committed to supporting these creative and dynamic sectors by introducing tax reliefs for these industries. The film tax relief has been a huge success and I encourage all those with a vested interest in the animation, high-end television and video games industries to take part in this exercise, and make sure your views are known.”

Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, David Gauke added:

“The Government is bringing in these new tax reliefs - to be among the most generous internationally - to support the UK’s already world-class creative industries.  These sectors not only make a cultural contribution to the UK, they make an economic one, creating products showcasing Britain that we export around the world.  I have been meeting with businesses in these innovative, high-tech sectors in the US this week and have been pleased to hear that they consider the new reliefs to increase the UK’s global competitiveness.”

The deadline for consultation responses is 29 October 2012.

Comments should be sent to:

2-4 Cockspur Street


Notes to Editors

HM Treasury press notice: UK to get world-class creative tax breaks (18 June 2012)

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Published 1 October 2012