The ONS monthly estimate for July shows that the UKs Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by only 0.1% in July and is still 2.1% below its pre-pandemic level.
Most of the growth was in production output (up 1.2%) while construction actually contracted again (four months in a row) – down by 1.6% (1.8% below its pre-pandemic levels). Bectu members will be interested to see that…
“Arts, entertainment and recreation activities saw strong growth in July 2021 of 9.0%. This reflects a boost from outdoor events such as sports clubs, amusement parks and festivals following the easing of restrictions on social distancing on 19 July 2021 in England.
This is the strongest monthly growth in arts, entertainment and recreation activities since July 2020, when it grew by 16.3%, though it remains 18.8% below its pre-coronavirus pandemic level of February 2020.”
That’s a contribution of 0.11% to UK GDP growth. Given what we know about the problems that theatre and live events are having in re-opening, there’s a long way to go and a lot more the government could do.
It would be a bigger bit of research but it may be the case that the burgeoning film/TV production sector could even be masking a more worrying situation for this part of the economy (looking at these figures, anyway)?