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Creative sector worth £76.9 billion to UK economy, says government

By | Published on Wednesday 14 January 2015

Houses Of Parliament

The government’s Department Of Culture, Media & Sport took time out yesterday to shout very loudly indeed about just how F-A-B the UK’s creative industries are, possibly in a bid to drown out all the creative industry professionals who were themselves saying “so the government totally ignored us all and booted out those secondary ticketing regulations we liked so much, what the fuck?”

According to new DCMS stats, the creative sector was worth £76.9 billion in 2013, or 5% of the UK economy, as the ‘gross value added’ for the sector rose for the fourth consecutive year. Together the creative industries accounted for 1.71 million jobs, a 1.4% increase on 2012, and 5.6% of the British workforce. Meanwhile the value of creative service exports was £17.3 billion, 8.8% of the UK’s service export total.

So that’s all fun, isn’t it? And here’s the government’s culture man and ticket tout fan Sajid Javid saying so: “The UK’s creative industries are recognised as world leaders around the globe and today’s figures show that they continue to grow from strength to strength. They are one of our most powerful tools in driving growth, outperforming all other sectors of industry and their contribution to the UK economy is evident to all”.

Giving a music industry spin to the figures, the boss of record industry trade group the BPI, Geoff Taylor, added: “These figures show that the UK’s creative industries don’t just provide entertainment and culture for the nation. Record labels alone employ thousands of people across the country who support new and established musicians whilst contributing to the economy and helping the UK emerge from its financial deficit”.

He went on: “Our musicians’ talent and our labels’ investment and expertise made 2014 a record-breaking year for British music. For the first time in official charts history, the top ten best-selling artist albums of the year came from UK artists. Very few countries can boast of such success. We hope that in the months ahead – and beyond the General Election – political parties will recognise that creativity is central to Britain’s future economic success and focus on practical measures to boost further investment in British talent”.

Like forcing Google to actually do something about the listing of piracy websites in its search engine, Taylor didn’t say but was probably thinking. Or stopping touts and their techie mates from screwing over gig-going music fans with dodgy under-the-counter ticket resales, most of the artist community would probably add. Though, says former city boy Javid, “the tax reliefs we’ve got in place and are extending to children’s TV and orchestras have been instrumental”. Yeah, a bit of tax relief, that’ll do it I’m sure.