Ireland's new tax incentive plan for gaming industry sparks developers' interest

Edited by Paurush Omar
Mar 04, 2023 10:45 PM IST

Ireland's tax incentive program lures video game developers for investment and cultural advancement

Video game developers have set their sights on Ireland after the country launched a new tax incentive program aimed at boosting investment and cultural awareness. The program, which became effective in January, offers a refundable corporation tax of up to €8 million for qualifying projects to companies that are based in the European Economic Area and have business operations in Ireland.

Video game developers eye Ireland for new tax incentive plan
Video game developers eye Ireland for new tax incentive plan

Patrick O'Donnell, a board member of Imirt, the industry body, said that some five to ten companies are currently engaged in talks with the Irish gaming industry, with some publicly listed firms included. This is a positive sign that the tax credit could attract investment to the country.

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Ireland's gaming market has the potential to expand exponentially, with a projected global value of $504 billion by 2030, according to market researcher Grand View Research. The adoption of the incentive scheme could position the country in the forefront of this burgeoning market. The incentive program is also a means of leveraging Ireland's existing film, technology, and animation sectors while supporting Irish and European culture.

Other countries, such as the UK, France, and Canada, have existing incentives for gaming firms, but Ireland's tax credit, combined with its high quality of life and technically skilled workforce, make it an even more appealing location for establishing a business, according to Craig Stephens, another Imirt board member.

The tax credit's cultural component is a significant draw, according to Maria O'Brien, a lecturer in digital media and cultural policy at Queen's University Belfast. She claims that the Irish incentive is particularly fascinating since it acknowledges the need to develop games as a cultural form by creating a strong industry base in Ireland.

Dublin already has a significant presence of renowned game developers, including Activision Blizzard Inc. and Riot Games, which are part of the city's well-established tech scene. Twitter Inc., Meta Platforms Inc., and ByteDance Ltd.'s TikTok also have their European headquarters in Dublin.

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