Greens announce plan to boost Australia’s creative industries

The Australian Greens are announcing their policy to establish a Creativity Commission and bolster our local creative industries at this year’s Screen Forever conference.

“Our economy and our industries are rapidly changing. A creativity commission would give Australians the resources and the license to think about things differently to maximise success,” Greens arts spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

“Creativity can be harnessed in everything we do, and the Arts should be at the centre of it. Our communities value the arts – it’s time to extend that across all parts of our society and economy.

“This $10 million fund will harness the soft-skills our economy will need into the future. By incorporating the Arts into STEM thinking our workforce can be both creative and competitive.
“If we are to truly adapt to a new way of working, not just locally, but globally, we must give space and funding to tap into our collective creativity.”

Senator Hanson-Young, a passionate advocate for Australian film and television, also announced the Greens’ policy to bolster local content creation.

“There is no limit to creativity in Australia, yet our producers, artists and talent are limited by the ebb and flow international markets and commercial broadcasters’ disinterest in good local content. We need consistent investment for people to get a foothold in creative industries and be able to stay there.

“If the big commercial broadcasters have their way, local content requirements for children’s television will be abolished and Australian-made drama will be cut, which would have a devastating ripple effect on the production sector.
“Australians deserve to have their stories told, and their communities reflected back to them on screen. Not only that, but it helps Australia engage with the rest of the world, while providing a lucrative export.

“A creative Australia is something our nation can be proud of at home and abroad. In this ever-increasingly globally connected world, the soft diplomacy great Australian content – and children’s content – can foster is a win-win.
“We export so much world-class content. We have huge names starring in major roles around the world. This is the time to invest in our creative industries to see just how far we could go.”
Creative Australia Policy details:

A Creativity Commission 
The future economy will require ‘soft-skills’ – that means we need a society equipped to understand and benefit from the creative sector. With a $10 million fund, the Greens will establish a multi-disciplinary Creativity Commission to provide oversight, advice and structural support to the creative sector and beyond.

The Creativity Commission will support the growth of the creative economy while also building our creative capacities and ideas to inform policy, initiatives and industry.[1]
A Creativity Commission will help us transition from STEM thinking to STEAM thinking by integrating the creativity, usually reserved for the arts, throughout the economy and society. The Greens understand that the future will require investment in creativity and innovation, not just ‘hard skills’ in science, technology, engineering and maths, and the Creativity Commission will help create and sustain those integrated pathways.

Invest in Australian content and creativity
Creativity is the bedrock of innovation and, in a fast changing global economy, couldn’t be more important. But in Australia the creative industries are under threat from funding cuts and policy that is not keeping up with the digital age.

Investing in Australian creativity requires a multi-pronged approach. That’s why we will strengthen Australian content quotas, develop a content creator fund and restore funding to the Australia Council. This threefold approach, combined with our Creativity Commission, will set up structures, funding and regulations that lay the foundations to comprehensively support Australian creativity.

Despite 98% of Australians participating annually in the arts, the peak government funding and advisory body for the arts, the Australia Council, has seen its funding dramatically reduced from pre-2013 levels by the Coalition government. This has disproportionately affected small and medium arts organisations.
We will restore and index funding to the Australia Council to support the development and production of the arts at a scale and ambition that reflects Australia’s commitment to and participation in the arts.

Local content quotas are the greatest boost for Australian creative content we have. They ensure there’s always a market for Australian production and recording companies, writers, directors, musicians, talent and stories. Currently, local content quotas are weak, unambitious and poorly enforced. Children’s content quotas are being filled with the cheapest content possible, instead of the best, while Australian musicians struggle to be heard on Australian airwaves.

The Greens will fight for effective local content requirements for broadcast, radio, subscription and streaming services, like Netflix and Stan.

As well as restoring funding to the Australia Council for the Arts, the Greens recognise that grassroots content creation needs access to support and funding. Local content creates jobs and sustains creative industries in Australia.

The Greens will establish a Content Creator Fund to set aside a grant fund of $50 million each year for the production of local content. This fund will support high quality local content, our creative industry and, importantly, allow Australians to keep telling their own stories. As part of the Greens’ commitment to First Nations media, $2 million of this fund will be available exclusively for First Nations content creation.

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