It’s a win for the Australian Games Industry!
The Digital Games Tax Offset (DGTO) officially passed both Houses on 21st June, 2023 and is available to eligible game developers that have spent a minimum of $500k on qualifying projects from 1st July, 2022. This is a massive win for large and small game studios all across Australia!
As an independent games studio that is entirely self-funded, this is incredibly exciting news. The DGTO will allow our company to grow more rapidly, be more competitive on an international stage, and make seeking external investment for future projects a much more appealing prospect for publishers and investors alike.
What is the DGTO?
The Digital Games Tax Offset (DGTO) is a 30% refundable tax offset for eligible businesses that spend a minimum of $500,000 on qualifying Australian development expenses related to the development of eligible games from 1 July 2022.
The DGTO can also be combined with other state-based incentives, meaning some projects are eligible for a rebate of up to 40% of development costs. This is a significant step forward for the growth of the Australian digital games industry and will help to establish Australia as a global leader. The government is committed to supporting this growth and we are expecting that there will be both short term and long term benefits.
Some of the key benefits for the Australian digital games industry are:
- Attracting investment and talent: The DGTO has already made Australia a more attractive destination for investment in the digital games industry, both from domestic and international sources. This will help to attract new talent to the industry, which has been facing a skills shortage for a number of years.
- Boosting innovation: The DGTO will allow new and established studios to invest more in innovation, work on more ambitious projects, and expand the scope of what was previously possible. This will help to keep Australia at the forefront of the global games industry.
- Creating jobs: The DGTO is expected to create new jobs directly and indirectly in the digital games industry. This will be a combination of attracting international talent, as well as growing the number of entry level positions that are available. As well as increasing the talent pool that studios can access, this will provide a large boost to the economy.
- Growing the export market: Games are the perfect product to export. They are a digital product with cultural significance, are primarily sold in overseas markets, and make full use of our highly skilled workforce. The increased capacity of our industry will allow for a greater number of games to be sold overseas and make Australia a key player in the global market.
Overall, the DGTO is an incredible opportunity for the Australian digital games industry. This bill will help the already skilled and innovative Australian games industry grow and be more competitive. It’ll make Australia a more attractive destination for game developers and investors, and help to put the country on the map as a global leader in the digital games industry.