The Indian gaming industry is eagerly awaiting the Union Budget on February 1, with expectations of tax incentives and policy support in order to foster growth. According to Rajan Navani, President of the Indian Digital Gaming Society (IDGS) and founder and CEO of JetSynthesys, the industry is seeking self-regulation and opportunities for global talent creation. Navani emphasized the need to view the addictive component of video gaming on par with over-the-top (OTT) platforms. He pointed out that there are currently no regulations on OTT content, despite the presence of violence and addiction traits. The IDGS president also highlighted the responsibility of game developers and communities in sharing age-appropriate and responsible content within the gaming industry.
The online gaming industry in India has seen a significant growth of 28% over the past three years, reaching a staggering Rs 16,428 crore in FY23, as per an EY report. This number is expected to reach Rs 33,243 crore by FY28, indicating the immense potential for the industry in the coming years. Navani stressed on the need for policy support and talent development in engineering, design, and product creation, recognizing the opportunity to create global talent out of India. He also called for the separation of animation and VFX from gaming, emphasizing the potential for gaming to lead India in intellectual property.
Additionally, Navani addressed the issue of the 28% GST imposed on deposits in real money gaming, stating that it is making the overall business unviable. He highlighted the challenges faced by players, with deposits being significantly reduced after the imposition of GST and further deductions by the companies. Navani’s viewpoint underscores the urgent need for policy reforms and regulatory measures in the gaming sector in order to promote and sustain its growth. As the industry waits for the Union Budget announcement, stakeholders are hopeful for positive developments that will support and nurture the burgeoning gaming industry in India.