Healthy contribution from creative sector

A report prepared for a newly formed group that champions New Zealand’s creative industries highlights the contribution they make to the economy, and proves the sector is not a 'nice to have' that should only be supported in good times, Labour’s Arts, Culture and Heritage spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.

“New Zealanders have long understood the role that the arts play in building our sense of place, well- being, and national identity.

“For Labour it has always been a given that this important role also came with an economic spin off, although that has never been the primary driver for supporting the sector.

“To see further proof of the economic benefits derived from the arts is gratifying, and demonstrates why our creative industries should not be treated as a fair-weather friend.

“PwC’s ‘Employment and National GDP impacts of music, book publishing and film and television in New Zealand' shows that these sectors have a total impact on our GDP of $3.5 billion and provide some 30,000 Kiwis with work.

“The report also shows the significant contribution that live music, broadcasting, and retail sales for publications play within the sector.

“Sadly, the National government has taken a narrow view when it comes to the arts, removing for instance any responsibility for local government in supporting and developing the sector.

“This report shows that the arts have a huge role to play in every respect. It's up to us to make the most of the potential that exists here,” Jacinda Ardern said.