Can publishers help build the creative industries in Europe?
As we reach the mid-point in 2021, in Europe we are starting to see the first glimpses of a return to normal life. While there is cautious optimism, we are also starting to see the figures and statistics of the impact of COVID on the European creative and cultural industries. In a report published by EY (and supported by the Federation of European Publishers) earlier this year, we are seeing an interesting picture of the role the book industry plays within the economy and the resilience our industry to cope with these unexpected events such as the pandemic. Whilst Europe is unique in many ways, the lessons emerging form the pandemic have wider applications in other markets.
Some interesting aspects of the EY report include:
- Prior to the pandemic, the Creative Industries were a heavyweight in the European economy with a turnover of €643 billion in 2019, representing 4.4% of EU GDP. This was greater than telecommunications, technology, pharmaceutics or the automotive industry.
- In 2020, the cultural and creative economy lost approximately 31% of its revenues, with a drop of €199 billion compared to 2019. It was one of the most affected industries in Europe, with eastern and central Europe hardest hit (from -36% in Lithuania to -44% in Bulgaria and Estonia).
What did the study tell us about the book industry?