UK ministers have promised extra support for Britain’s creative industries as part of a strategy to create 1mn more jobs in the sector within a decade.
On Thursday, UK culture secretary Lucy Frazer will say in a speech in London that the government wants the British creative sectors to grow by an extra £50bn in value by 2030.
The government will unveil a creative industries plan before the summer, which is expected to focus on expanding “clusters” of specialist companies in different parts of the UK in sectors such as gaming and film, and on developing skilled workers.
The creative industries are one of the “pillars of the economy” that have been prioritised by chancellor Jeremy Hunt along with technology, green industries, life sciences and advanced manufacturing.
Hunt has said that the creative industries are crucial to supporting the UK’s ambition to foster the next Silicon Valley in technology firms.
Frazer will tell the Deloitte and Enders media and telecoms conference on Thursday morning that the government “can do more tangible things to support our creatives” but also warned of the threat of increasing global competition. “We cannot afford to be complacent,” she will say.
The UK is among the leading countries for film and TV production, boosted by access to large stage spaces, tax breaks and the commissioning powers of broadcasters such as the BBC. The UK is also seen to have a competitive advantage in other industries such as music and gaming.
The creative industries employ more than two million people, according to the government, which means that the new targets reflect an ambition to grow the sector by a third in seven years.
The Department for Culture, Media and Sport is developing the plan for growth of the sector across the UK. Frazer will say that the government will support skills, ranging from music and extracurricular activities for primary school children to boot camps and apprenticeships for those seeking jobs or returning to the workforce.
She will say that companies will be encouraged in clusters across the UK as “support cannot be at the expense of London or detract from those places that are already thriving . . . it needs to build on what we have already seen across the country. Whether that’s video games in Dundee and Leamington Spa, or TV in Birmingham and Leeds.”
The government will also target “specific support at different sub sectors, to unlock growth across the UK,” she will add.