4172.0 - Arts and Culture in Australia: A Statistical Overview, 2004 (Reissue)  
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Contents >> Output of Cultural Industries >> Australian National Accounts


A measure of the significance of an industry to the Australian economy is the value of its outputs compared with those of other industries and to the economy as a whole. The Australian National Accounts (ANA) provides a summary of the economic activity of the nation allowing such comparisons to be made. The ANA includes expenditure in Australia by businesses, governments and people from overseas.

Data from the ANA are available on both an industry basis (the value of output of firms in the industry) and a product basis (the value of commodities typically produced by the industry). The difference between the industry and product data arises because some firms produce products which are typically not made by firms in their industry.

The industries in the ANA are defined using the 1993 Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC) (cat. no. 1292.0).The Classification combines industries into economically significant classes which are then the basis for statistical output.

For Australia, a significant class is one which has $200m turnover in Australia or employs 3,500 - based on 1989-90 information. Unfortunately, many individual cultural industries do not reach these limits and are therefore grouped with similar cultural industries. For example, those working as painters, writers and playwrights are all grouped together, with several other similar activities, under a class entitled 'Creative arts'. Data are available for the combined group but not for the individual creative activities.

A small number of cultural goods and services have been excluded from the calculation of cultural output because they cannot be separately identified from non-cultural products.

The latest product data available are for the year 1998-99. These data show that the Australian production of cultural goods and services totalled $31,828.0m.

The value of the output of the cultural industries was approximately the same as that of the Residential building industry ($31,713.0m), the Scientific research, technical and computer services industry ($31,552.2m), the Education industry ($33,179.0m) and the Accommodation, cafes and restaurants industry ($35,191.0m).

In 1998-99, the value of production of Printing and services to printing totalled $5,639.9m, which was 18% of the total value of cultural goods and services produced in that year. Newspapers (printing or publishing) and Radio and TV station services each accounted for 14% of the total value of output of cultural goods and services. Advertising services was the only other cultural product which accounted for more than 10%.


Australian production
Percentage of total cultural goods and services produced
Product item(c)

Publishing, recorded media and publishing
Newspapers, printing or publishing
4 437.7
Magazines and bound periodicals publishing
1 284.6
Books, sheet music, maps, etc. publishing
1 529.9
Pre-recorded audio, video tapes, computer tapes or disks, compact disks and records, manufactured or published
1 106.0
8 397.7
Motion picture, radio and television services
Motion picture production
Film hiring services
Motion picture theatre services
Radio and TV station services
4 399.6
Pay TV services
6 374.2
Libraries, museums and the arts
Library, museum and art gallery services
Zoological and botanical gardens operation
Recreational parks and gardens operation
Music and theatre production operation
Creative arts services
Sound recording studios operation
Performing arts venue operation
Other services to the arts(g)
3 825.0
Other cultural products
Printing and services to printing
5 639.9
Television receiving sets production
Musical instruments (incl. parts and accessories) production
Architectural services
1 384.0
Advertising services
3 779.0
Commercial art and display services
1 101.0
Video hire
Photography services n.e.c.
13 231.1
31 828.0

- nil or rounded to zero (including null cells)
(a) At basic values - the net price received by the producer (after deducting any indirect taxes).
(b) Excludes products produced by: the Recorded media manufacturing and publishing industry; the Book and magazine wholesaling industry; the Newspaper, book and stationery retailing industry; and the Recorded music retailing industry (details for these industries are not available separately).
(c) The product items are defined to be consistent with ANZSIC, which has been used by the ABS to code industry since 1993.
(d) Includes other income.
(e) Includes increase in inventories.
(f) Includes general government consumption of fixed capital.
(g) Includes casting agency operation; news reporting services (excluding own account); and services to the arts n.e.c..
(h) Includes royalties income and licence fees (excluding licence fees paid to the government).
ABS, Australian National Accounts: Input-Output Tables (Product Details), 1998-99 (cat. no. 5215.0.55.001).

The data in table 6.1 show the value of cultural goods and services produced in Australia. This is a gross measure which includes the value of output produced by other industries that are used by the cultural industries in producing their output.

For instance, the category Radio and TV station services includes the purchase of the rights to broadcast sport events which are the output of another industry (i.e. the Sport, recreation and gambling services industry).

The value of an industry's output after deducting the value of goods and services used in producing them is termed 'value added'. This is equivalent to the return received by the factors of production (labour and capital).

This is a net measure of the size of the industry's output, and allows the production of different industries to be added together without the risk of double counting.

Value added data are only available on an industry basis, which is not as detailed as the product basis. Therefore, value added data are not available for all of the cultural products displayed in table 6.1, which shows only the value of production and the value added for those cultural industries which can be identified separately in the industry classification.

The value of the goods and services produced by the cultural industries for which value added data were available was $17,773m in 1998-99. The value added component of these cultural industries was $10,117m, which indicates that 57% of the value of goods and services produced by the cultural industries was paid to factors of production (labour and capital). The remaining amount ($7,656m or 43%) was paid to other industries for their output which was used in producing the cultural goods and services.

These selected cultural industries account for 1.9% of Australia's Gross Domestic Product (GDP), in terms of value added. Since these industries produce about 56% of the output of all cultural industries (those industries included in table 6.1), it seems likely that cultural industries as a whole account for approximately 3.3% of Australia's GDP in 1998-99. GDP is equivalent to gross national expenditure plus exports of goods and services minus imports of goods and services.

6.2 OUTPUT AND VALUE ADDED, Selected Cultural Industries(a) - 1998-99

Australian production(b)
Value added

Motion picture, radio and television services
5 501
3 643
Libraries, museums and the arts
3 825
2 156
Publishing, recorded media, etc.
8 447
4 318
Total for selected cultural industries(a)
17 773
10 117
Total for all industries
1 100 720
542 831

(a) Those for which value added data are available.
(b) These figures differ slightly from those that could be obtained by summing the relevant categories in the previous table. This table shows the value of output produced by firms belonging to this industry, whereas the previous table shows the value of products typically produced by this industry, regardless of whether they were produced by firms in this industry (the difference arises because some firms have non-core activities which belong to a different industry to their core activities).
ABS, Australian National Accounts: Input-Output Tables, 1998-99 (cat. no. 5209.0.55.001).

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