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Statistical Snapshot – Australian Contemporary Music Industry 2016

Advocacy Resources, Research

March 30, 2016

Music Australia has produced a second statistical snapshot of the Contemporary Australian Music Industry.  Its shows that contemporary music is a billion dollar Australian industry – a major contributor to our economy and culture.  This data has been gathered as part of a project working with industry partners to produce a National Plan for Contemporary Music.

In lead up to release of our National Contemporary Music Plan, currently nearing finalisation, we have prepared a Statistical Snapshot to demonstrate the size of this industry and encourage greater recognition and investment by Australian Governments.

These figures show that more Australians attend live music than sport; with over 40 million people attending contemporary music performances annually, and research has shown that Australia’s live contemporary music industry generates revenues of $1.5 – $2 billion annually.  Expenditure associated with live music in Australia is estimated to generate close to 65,000 jobs, half of which are full-time.

While a sizeable industry, it is also not robust.  Digitisation of music has hugely impacted global revenues, dropping from $26b to $15b in 15 years to 2014, profoundly changing how music is consumed. During this period Australian music lost global market share, dropping from 3rd to 6th largest world music market for revenues, compounding Australia’s position as a net cultural importer, with a smaller creative sector than global peers.

These challenges have increased Australia’s reliance on live music as the main source of artist income. While this is a vibrant sector, it too faces numerous regulatory, environmental and consumer trend pressures. A 2014 arts participation study showed a two percent drop in live music attendance over four years.

Economic highlights include:

Copyright industries generate billions: Our copyright industries generate more value add to the Australian economy than manufacturing and health care; with recorded music being one of the most significant contributors.

Investing in music strengthens our economy, Ernst & Young research for APRA AMCOS has shown that tax incentives for Australian music could generate 250,000 additional public performances each year, over 30 million additional live music attendances, and increased investment in sound recordings by new and current artists.

Music generates substantial economic activity: Every dollar Australians spend on live music circulates three dollars back into the economy.

Contemporary music generates jobs; expenditure associated with live music in Australia is estimated to generate some 65,000 jobs, half of which are full-time.

Download the full 2016 Snapshot 

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