A report published yesterday showed that the creative arts in Iceland generated just as much revenue as aluminium production, and created about 10,000 jobs in the country.
There has been a general trend in Europe for the creative arts to be seen as an independent means of generating revenue, and Iceland has been no exception. According to the report – funded by the combined efforts of five ministries and Promote Iceland – in 2009 the creative arts in Iceland generated 191 billion ISK in gross revenue, far surpassing agriculture and fishing combined. The tax revenue in the field, in fact, surpassed that of construction and equaled that of aluminium production.
Minister of Industry Katrín Júlíusdóttir told reporters that the findings of this report were important enough to warrant government action. To this end, she announced that 4 million ISK would be invested into researching how the labour market can better meet the needs of the creative arts. She said there will also be greater emphasis placed on the creative arts in advertisements.
It should be noted that the term “creative arts” is a broad one in this case, referring to not just film, music, books and the visual arts, but also design, architecture, computer games and cultural mainstays, such as museums and galleries.