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News September 7, 2022

Music Industry Calls for a Federal Music Development Agency

Senior Journalist, B2B
Music Industry Calls for a Federal Music Development Agency

A number of music industry bodies have come together to call for the creation of a new national music development agency to oversee strategic investment and policy development.

The collective said despite the enormous contribution that Australian contemporary music makes to national identity, education, community and GDP, no Federal Government has yet developed a long-term vision for the industry.

The collective’s request for a federal music development agency is a part of a submission to the Australian Government’s National Cultural Policy consultation.

It noted that in order for Australia’s music scene to become a global power player, the policy, investment and industry settings needed to be right. Should this happen, it said, the local industry could potentially earn a 5% to 10% market share of the global music industry, which Goldman Sachs predicted could be worth $131 billion by 2030.

The submission from the 18 industry bodies also calls for funding for industry support organisation Support Act, as well as assistance in addressing the findings and implementing the recommendations of the Music Industry Review Report into sexual harm, sexual harassment and systemic discrimination.

It also seeks direct investment in First Nations music, support for the creation of great new and diverse Australian music, skills development and global exports, incentives for the use of local content on streaming and broadcast platforms, insurance to provide certainty for local audiences, a new tax offset for live music and programs to build industry sustainability through strong intellectual property, national mentorship programs and youth music investment.

The group noted that the Australian Government has a centralised strategic investment model for the development of the screen industry though policy and investment via Screen Australia and the Australian Children’s Television Foundation, with direct investment of $92 million per annum, as well as investment in export (Ausfilm), tax offsets and skills and training. It also cited industries including transport, tourism, higher education and argi-business, and called for commensurate investment for music, given the industry’s scale and the global opportunity.

The submission to the Government highlighted how music intersects with other national interests including arts, education, health, communications, Indigenous Australians, innovation, small business, export, youth affairs, regional, trade, tourism, the night-time and visitor economy and foreign affairs.

“Currently, there is no governmental structure or support to recognise this,” it said in a statement.

The united music industry statement added: “Whether it is a young songwriter in their bedroom writing the next global hit, a recording artist, producer and sound engineer in the studio working on a streaming smash, a composer creating a soundtrack to the next great film or game, artists and musicians performing for a festival, concert or local gig, from Bankstown to Brunswick, Bundaberg to Broome, there is a massive pipeline of music talent coming from across the nation.

“This plan will ensure sustainability of the entire music ecosystem, from artists through to managers, crew, promoters, and small music businesses at the heart of the local industry.”

The music industry submission calling for a federal music development agency was compiled by Association of Artist Managers, Australian Festival Association, Australian Guild of Screen Composers, Australian Independent Record Labels Association, Australian Live Music Business Council, Australian Music Centre, Australian Music Industry Network, Australasian Music Publishers Association, APRA AMCOS, ARIA, PPCA, Crew Care, Live Music Office, Live Performance Australia, National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Music Office, Sounds Australia, Support Act and The Push.

It can be read in full here.

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