News February 25, 2016

Report: Aus to see 87% jump in live music with tax offset

Former Editor
Report: Aus to see 87% jump in live music with tax offset

Image: Brisbane venue The Brightside

APRA AMCOS, along with Australia Council, PPCA, Australia Hotels Association and the Restaurant & Catering association commissioned research, which shows venues would host live music if they were to receive a taxation offset. 

Research released by APRA AMCOS and Ernst & Young (EY) yesterday points to a $40.2 million windfall for the Australian economy, despite the proposed reduction in tax, due to increased spending in the economy.

Ernst & Young’s study of the viability of tax offsets for the contemporary music industry in 2015 found that the net result from such tax offsets would result in up to 31.1 million additional attendances and an 87% increase in live music performances.

23,000 venues and a range of major and independent record labels were consulted for the research. Ernst & Young found that if a range of tax offsets were provided, an estimated 2,017 new venues (hotels, bars, restaurants, nightclubs) would stage live music across Australia.

The value-add for those venues would be a cash offset of $40,000 for new live music venues, and a 20% expenses offset for existing live music venues.

APRA AMCOS Head of Member Services, Dean Ormston, told TMN: “In the last week we’ve witnessed an amazing groundswell of support for live music in community protests, not just from the venue owners, but the music fans and the music creators. To me, what this points to is the passion we still have to renew a vibrant live music industry, culturally as well as commercially.”

Otmston said an investment incentive of this nature will pay dividends. “[…] More venues will host live music, more often, which means more artists performing, more jobs in production, more jobs to serve the patrons attending, more accommodation and travel expenditure across the whole country – millions of dollars in revenue.”

Ormston added: “The contemporary music industry has traditionally received very little investment support. A vibrant local live music sector is critical to ensuring broader industry success and developing Australia’s considerable music export potential.”

Sound recording producers would also benefit from a tax offset. Those surveyed reported that an offset would assist in reducing overhead costs and allow for increased investment in new and current artists. 

Dan Rosen, CEO, ARIA, said in a statement: “To ensure we have a thriving Australian music industry, we need to maintain a healthy ecosystem of investment in artist recordings and live music venues to host their performances. Like they do for film, tax offsets will ensure more Australian production with increased investment in local artists and make Australia a more attractive location to create recordings.”

Tony Grybowski, CEO, Australia Council, added: “The Australia Council is committed to working with industry to enable Australian artists and audiences to make and experience great work. This report will stimulate important discussion around support for music, but should also promote innovative approaches to new investment models across the arts sector.”

The research follows APRA AMCOS and Live Music Office’s revelation that the Sydney lockout laws caused a 40% drop in live music revenue at venues within the Sydney lockout zones. The data also showed a 19% decrease in foot traffic at nightclubs and dance venues since the lockout laws were introduced in 2014.

Read the full report here

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