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Olsberg talks up film industry impact at TIFF conference

The Olsberg-SPI chair was presenting new research on the economic benefits of the film industry.

Presenting on the first day of this year’s TIFF industry conference, Jonathan Olsberg, chairman of London-based creative industries strategy consultancy Olsberg-SPI, has claimed that “film and TV dramas punch above every other creative industry” in terms of delivering economic benefits.

“There is substantial increased awareness of how the creative industries as a whole are delivering strong, rapid economic growth and contributing to productivity gains,” Olsberg suggested, adding that “the core economic benefits delivered by the [film] sector have really come to the fore.”

Presenting a new piece of research, Olsberg noted that one of the major findings was that “up to $1 for every $2 spent [on film and TV projects] impacts other creative industries”. He referred to this as the “trickle across effect”, saying that money spent on nurturing talent, screen tourism, building infrastructure and other investments was having a positive impact across the creative industries.

Olsberg also pointed out that in the UK, for every £1 given out in tax relief to film productions, £12 was generated in return to the country’s economy.

“It’s a very smart way to encourage economic activity. It delivers strong economic growth and employment,” he added.

Discussing the industries in the UK, US and Canada, Olsberg noted that while the US had the largest overall creative economy (14.2m employees), it was Canada that had the greatest employment of its workforce in the creative industries (13%). The UK creative industries were seeing strong growth, at 3.2% per annum, in comparison with 2% for the UK economy as a whole.

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