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Our Creative Value

THE BRAND-NEW NT Creative Industries Strategy has a big bunch of historic ‘firsts’ attached to it. It’s the first co-led plan for developing creative industries the Territory has ever had – a partnership between the Chamber of Commerce, NT Government and creative industry representatives.

Angela O’Donnell, Steering Committee Executive Officer, says the 12-month process brought everyone in the Territory’s creative landscape together to come up with a plan for the next five years.

“Ordinarily in the NT, we talk about say dance or theatre, or visual arts or Indigenous arts and crafts, all as quite separate bits of the puzzle.

For the first time, this has brought everyone together at the table as a group with their different audiences, stakeholders and priorities.”

The strategy names 12 industry subsectors, as well as putting numbers on how much money they generate for the economy. We now know the NT’s creative industries brings a hefty $735 million in a year, as well as employing almost 2400 Territorians annually.

“We’ve never had the economic data before,” says O’Donnell.

“And the hope is, we’ll now be able to do this every four or five years and see growth.”

She says having this data will help the sector advocate for the social and cultural, as well as economic, value of the arts.

“I know deep in my bones – and from a lived experience – that the creative industries have a far bigger impact on our communities, our social fabric and our identity. We are a whole picture, but at the end of the day in these difficult times, I also want creatives paid properly, and the sector to thrive.”

O’Donnell says a vital step on the way to this vision is the Government’s commitment to establishing a Creative Industries Council to represent the sector.

It’s another big ticket first that will mean the creative industries have an established voice at the table.

“Every other industry from the Cattlemen’s Association to hospitality and retail has a council that can advocate at a very high level to government, the community and industry about their benefits and value.”

“We haven’t had that before and it’s certainly time.”

Watch the recorded livestream here.

Image: Northern Territory Government

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