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Budget 2010 – What’s The Good News?

March 24th, 2010 by

Meet Rt Hon Alistair Darling MP, the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Today has been a big day for Alistair and the UK’s Labour government as the budget for 2010 has been unveiled (no that’s not the God of War 3 collectors edition he’s holding up).  While this may not be as interesting as a new GTA announcement, it did have one pleasant surprise which we should take a look at.

Amongst the usual rising prices of fuel, alcohol and cigarettes.  There was a lot of focus placed on the industrial and economic growth of the UK in the aftermath of the recent recession.  Thankfully this included the thriving creative industries and cited video gaming specifically.

The 37 page Budget Statement found here contains the following excert;

“I will offer help to the computer games sector, similar to the steps which
are helping restore the fortunes of the British film industry.
This is a highly successful and growing industry, with half its sales coming
from exports, and we need to keep British talent in this country.”

The culture secretary Ben Bradshaw pointed out the staggering growth the industry has seen in a statement to develop-online;

“Video games generate £2 billion in retail sales in the UK, and contribute £1 billion to UK GDP and have huge potential for growth.”

With UK studio’s such as Lionhead, Codemasters and Rocksteady paving the way forwards, this assistance should ensure their continued success and keep home grown talent in the country. But has this come too late? Let us not forget those who have already fallen by the wayside in recent years.  Free Radical, Pivotal and even the former home of Lara Croft when Rebellion had to close down Core Design.

Thoughts? Opinions? Let us know by leaving a comment below. If you enjoyed this article, you might also be interested in reading our interview with three leading politicians, that you can find here.

4 Responses to “Budget 2010 – What’s The Good News?”
  1. avatar xeroxeroxero says:

    For all the bad news about video games at the moment, this is absolutely fantastic! If this guy is good on his word it should really help boost the UK games industry.

  2. avatar apollyon365 says:

    He’s a politician – how good on his word do you think he’s really going to be!

  3. avatar Hugo Rune says:

    Considering its not a mainstream vote winner you have to assume its legitimate. The clever old Badger.

  4. avatar Pat Jennings says:

    I can’t help but agree with Hugo. There are some (well, a few) people in Whitehall and Westminster who aren’t fixated on perception and winning votes (no, really!). The games industry is an already huge, growing industry, with massive potential, and it is a clear future source of high revenue for the government as well as an economic boon in terms of jobs and wealth. This is a sensible stance, but the question is: what will this “help” entail in tangible terms?

    I sincerely hope it isn’t just a series of tax breaks for overseas publishers to encourage them to keep development teams based in the UK in the short term. I’d rather Lionhead and Co. buggered off to America and our homegrown talent (with its novel ideas) were given support to publish through UK companies and sell their product abroad as a third party.

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