With Oscar fever around the corner and with British talent expected to shine once again this Sunday evening, new figures released today from NESTA, the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts signal that the UK's creative industries will take centre-stage as a major, high growth contributor to the UK economy over the next five years.
NESTA's analysis suggests that between 2009 and 2013 the UK creative industries - which is responsible for films, music, fashion, TV and video games production - will grow on average at 4% - more than double the rate of the rest of the economy. By 2013, the sector is expected to employ 1.3 million people, likely to be more than the financial sector.
The optimistic medium-term outlook is primarily due to the opportunities for innovation as increasing numbers of creative businesses take advantage of digital technologies to develop new business models. This is illustrated by the digital distribution model which has been exemplified by the success of ‘iTunes'.
By 2013, there may be as many as 180,000 creative businesses in the sector, compared to the current number of 148,000. In the same year, the sector is expected to contribute as much as £85 billion to UK value added, up from £57 billion.
Jonathan Kestenbaum, NESTA's Chief Executive comments: ‘Today's figures point to the creative industries, and specifically the talent we have nurtured within it, becoming a key driver for the UK's recovery from recession. However, we need to keep our eye on the horizon and drive forward 21st Century business models which are key to the future success of this sector.'
Today's figures also show that although gross value added (GVA) in the sector is likely to drop sharply in 2009, perhaps as much as 6 per cent, reflecting the general economic environment, the sector will quickly recover to show stronger than average growth from 2010 when it is expected to rise back to 3 per cent. The creative industries currently account for 6.4 per cent of the UK economy.