Screen industry creating more than 23,000 jobs a year

Press Release – Film New Zealand
Film New Zealand says Statistics New Zealand figures revealing that the NZ screen industry is paying $780 million in wages and salaries shows just how lucrative the industry is to the domestic economy.

Statistics New Zealand figures just released show the screen industry in New Zealand directly employed over 15,500 people in more than 23,000 jobs in the year ending March 2011. Production and post-production paid out more than $515 million in wages and salaries and employed 8,500 people.

Gisella Carr, CEO of screen industry body Film New Zealand says the new data reinforces how the industry is growing, and where that growth lies. She said it has been very difficult up to now to get any accurate understanding of screen industry employment because of the project-based nature of the industry and the number of contractors employed. Contracting is a key form of employment in much of the industry.

“These are substantial annual figures in their own right, but even more important is the growth in total revenue of 13 percent between 2005 and 2011. Furthermore the growth is nationwide.”
She says most excitingly, production and post-production, the areas of the screen sector responsible for the creation of content, represent the lion’s share of $515 million of the total wages and salaries paid out.

“These figures deal only with direct employment in the screen industry.
“Equally important but less visible, is the employment of New Zealanders in other industries who benefit from screen sector activity.”

She cites a Film New Zealand ad campaign last week highlighting the contribution of sixteen communities and businesses to The Hobbit Trilogy. “This showed for instance, that film work now makes up about 25% of the workload of North Harbour Rentals, an Auckland truck rental company employing nine staff, and has enabled the company to invest in new vehicles and increase the size and quality of their fleet to 15 makeup and nine wardrobe trucks. “

Statistics New Zealand has combined Screen Industry Survey data with LEED (Linked Employer-Employee Data) to develop the figures.

“We appreciate the work Statistics New Zealand has been doing in this new experimental data series, which has improved measures for our industry.”

“Statistics New Zealand has been careful to point out the numbers do not tell us whether jobs are full or part time, or duration, but what they do give us is a much clearer picture of the value of these jobs and numbers of people working in the industry,” Ms Carr says.

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