UK Chancellor Alistair Darling will soon release his Budget -- and a long-championed tax break for the region's video game developers may not be included.
The UK Guardian reports there's no sign from the Chancellor
that the game industry cultural tax break proposed in June's Digital Britain report will be part of the budget plan -- despite the fact that the game industry contributes more to the UK economy than the film industry, which does receive Treasury aid.
Over the past year, UK trade body Tiga has aggressively lobbied the government to support the industry, arguing that the tax break would create or protect
some 3,550 graduate level jobs and £457 million ($750 million), and would pay back its own cost in tax receipts over five years.
Tiga's head Richard Wilson commented recently: "We are convinced that the games industry has the potential to be one of the UK's leading digital industries as we emerge from the recession, so we will redouble our efforts to convince government and policymakers of the need to back our sector."
Without it, Tiga has said, the UK games industry will shrink and be unable to remain competitive with other countries like Canada, which awards generous breaks and incentives to development studios.
However, all that is known thus far is that the Chancellor did not mention the possible tax breaks in his 45-minute pre-Budget report, holding out some remote hope that incentives might be included in some way in the final Budget.