Country Focus: UK
£614 m bonanza possible for UK economy
by Naman Ramachandran
17/03/2009 - A report quantifying the benefits of anti-piracy legislation has concluded that a few simple steps could lead to UK economic output increasing by £614m, protect thousands of film industry jobs and create a further 7,900 jobs in the wider economy.
Great Expectations: A report on the economic opportunities for the UK film sector, published by Oxford Economics and commissioned by Respect for Film, says that new laws could bring additional gross revenues of £268m to the audio-visual industry, generation of £310m in Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and a further £155m in added revenue to the Exchequer.
This is welcome news to a sector reeling from a direct £513 million annual loss to piracy, which equates to a total loss to the economy of £1.2 billion.
The report suggests that making camcording illegal in cinemas could result in a benefit of £26.1 million; regulating car boot sales and other markets £6.3 million; tackling illegal file sharing £141.7 million; and reduction in secondary piracy £94 million.
Lavinia Carey, Chair of Respect for Film, said, “Given the current state of the economy, these recommendations are a quick win for the Government given the positive impact they would have on the economy.”
David Lammy, Minister for Intellectual Property, said, “Technological advances in the digital age have seen copyright move from its historic legal and technical backwater into the wider political spotlight. This reflects a similar move in the public psyche - the zeitgeist is about access to information and entertainment. Copyright enforcement is one of the most challenging areas that we have to tackle as part of that.”