Ministers under fire for omitting creative sectors

Ministers appear to be “missing a trick” because their economic blueprint hinging on 11 sectors omits the creative industry, in a snub to its great potential for growth and job creation, a think-tank warns.

Flagging up the omission, the Institute for Public Policy Research said it seemed the government was “not taking seriously” the creative sector, which surpassed average industry growth by 25 times in 2012.

It has also grown by three times the average since the bottom of the financial crisis in 2009 and, thanks to its seven individual marketplaces, has seen turnover since that period increase by almost nine per cent.

Further outlining why the creative industry should feature in the UK’s Industrial Strategy, the IPPR pointed out that the number of start-ups in the sector is up 18 per cent, resulting in 217,000 new firms (and potential employers) in 2012.

The design, marketing and advertising marketplaces led the rise in business formations since 2008, alongside their counterparts in the Film, TV, Radio and Video marketplace, the institute said.

While some of those businesses may have benefitted from the government’s offerings to innovators, like tax relief and broadband, such policies need to be brought together in a cohesive framework for the creative industry.

Will Straw, a director at IPPR explained: “The government already has a major impact on this industry… but the failure to provide a coherent industrial strategy across government departments risks squandering some of the great potential for growth and job creation that the sector has to offer.”

He added: “Eleven other sectors have been chosen [as priorities for economic growth] but there seems to be little rationale for their inclusion while omitting one of Britain's most thriving and exciting industries.”


15th January 2014

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