The value of the creative industries
As a whole, the creative industries contribute £87 billion each year to the UK economy (that’s about £10 million per hour), generate £20 billion in exports, employ nearly 2 million people directly and represent the fastest growing sector of the UK’s economy.
The audio-visual sector – film and television – is a key contributor to this success:
- The UK film industry generated revenues in excess of £4.1 billion in 2015, the second largest market of its kind in the world.
- In 2016 spend on film production in the UK reached the highest level on record at £1.6bn, a 13% year-on-year rise, according to the British Film Institute.
- Last year’s three biggest grossing films in the UK – Rogue One, Fantastic Beasts and Bridget Jones’s Baby were all shot in the UK and helped generate a near-record box office take of almost £1.3 billion.
- Films made substantially in the UK grossed $9.4 billion worldwide in 2015 accounting for 25% of global box office receipts.
- The UK film industry employs more than 66,000 people, about 30% of the 230,000 working today in the audio-visual sector overall, many of them in high-skilled roles in areas such as visual effects. It also makes a significant contribution to skills development.
- There was also significant growth in spend from international high-end television production in 2016, with 36 television productions generating a UK spend of £477.8m – up 11% from £430.3 million in 2014.
- The UK-made Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) remains the highest performing film, earning $1.951 billion worldwide.
The creative industries, together with our technology businesses and service sectors, plus many others, are all underpinned by intellectual capital, making the UK one of only three countries in the world to be a net exporter of intellectual property (IP). This helps our economy grow, creates jobs, attracts investments from overseas and makes a substantial contribution to the UK’s cultural heritage, helping to project the UK’s cultural appeal to audiences around the world.