TIGA, the UK trade association which lobbies on behalf of Britain's homegrown games industry, has released its 2015 manifesto for strengthening the sector in the next five years.
TIGA's manifesto refers to a number of areas in which the association can see room for improvement, and proposes new measures with which the UK government could further empower an already booming British industry.
The press, Members of Parliament, and games industry figureheads were all in attendance at the manifesto's launch in the House of Commons, with the following objectives forming the cornerstones of its content:
- “a flourishing developer and digital publisher sector, with strong numbers of start-ups;
- a decline in the current 30 per cent business mortality rate and rising numbers of sustainable studios;
- an increase in the overall studio population from the 620 businesses that existed in Q1 2014;
- consistent increases in employment and investment - driven by Games Tax Relief – with over 2,000 new studio jobs, a £220 million increase in investment from games development companies and regional clusters contributing to the industry’s growth;
- an increase in the production of culturally British video games;
- a rise in the number of studios with 15 or more staff so that there are more businesses in the UK capable of handling larger projects and investments from global publishers;
- access to finance become less of a challenge;
- the brain drain of talented staff overseas diminish as a problem, and;
- the UK become a globally recognised centre for games education and continuous professional development in the sector’s workforce.”
The proposals for achieving these goals in the next five years, then, are pretty wide-ranging.
They include the Creative Content Fund, which would give developers financial backing to co-fund new ventures, and an Export Tax Relief for encouraging “export-led economic growth.”
Other significant proposals in TIGA's manifesto include pursuing the Office of Fair Trading's Principles for Online and App-based games as a global standard, as well as reforming the EU's prerequisite for a narrative component in games eligible for Creative Europe funding.
Paving the way
“TIGA’s manifesto sets out a clear, concise and cogent agenda for powering the UK video games forward,” said Jason Kingsley OBE, TIGA Chairman and CEO at Rebellion.
“Our proposals are borne from a deep understanding of the challenges games developers, digital publishers and service and education providers face in today’s global, digital videogames market. The achievement of the goals set out in this manifesto will strengthen our industry for years to come.”
Members of Parliament, too, praised the work of TIGA and noted the significance of the coming election: “I am pleased that TIGA has developed this comprehensive set of policy proposals to help the UK games industry to build on the success of Games Tax Relief,” said Luciana Berger MP.
“This is an important contribution as all political parties consider their manifestos for the general election.”
You can read the full Manifesto here (PDF).