8th July Budget: Ukie calls for talent hub in each regional games cluster and support for exports across country
In advance of the post-election Budget on 8th July video games trade body Ukie is calling on the Government to recognise and support major games clusters across the United Kingdom.
Work with innovation think tank NESTA last year identified 15 regional games clusters around the country, all with potential for significant further growth if the right measures are put in place. In its letter to Chancellor George Osborne Ukie argues that there should be government support for long-term talent development and help with exports in these increasingly important regional clusters.
Ukie’s requests come after successfully lobbying the government in the pre-election Budget in March for the Skills Investment Fund and the £4m extension of the Prototype Fund to support video games incubators.
For 8th July Budget Ukie argues for:
- Long term talent development to be supported through the extension of Ukie’s successful Digital Schoolhouse work with secondary schools in London across the country. This project, running in 80 primary and secondary schools, teaches creative computing to primary school children using games and the latest digital learning techniques. The programme reached 5,000 children in just under a year. Funding is sought to establish a hub in each of the video games clusters in the NESTA report.
- Government to undertake a co-ordinated and strategic programme of trade and investment activity, targeting priority international markets for export and inward investment. Activity of this kind is vital in helping small games studios from across games clusters to attend major overseas tradeshows – with a returns-on-investment at the three most recent Ukie-delivered UKTI tradeshows representing £429 for every £1 of public money spent.
Dr. Jo Twist CEO of Ukie said:
“Our proposals focus support on emerging games clusters will make a real difference to the industry right across the country. Ukie will submit ambitious proposals to government supported by a major piece of research to influence the long-term Spending Round expected in November this year.”