UK Music has responded to the 2021 Budget and Spending review, urging the Government to help drive jobs and growth in the music industry with a three point plan.
The organisation suggested funds for freelancers to recover, an extension of the Culture Recovery Fund and encouragement of exports abroad and investment.
UK Music said the first measure would create music education opportunities and encourage investment in the “next generation of Britsh music success stories”.
The second would see a permanent reduction on VAT for hospitality services fostering investment within the industry, while the third would boost export schemes like the Music Export Growth Scheme.
UK Music chief executive Jamie Njoku-Goodwin said: “These next few months are an absolutely critical time for the UK music industry. Following the easing of restrictions, businesses are getting back on their feet and fans are able to enjoy live music again.
“We must not allow that recovery to be derailed as we rebuild our sector post-Covid. It is crucial that we get Government support to help us continue rebuilding and hiring people who went so long without work due to the pandemic.”
He added that he welcomed the Budget decision to maintain business rate relief for hospitality and leisure, as well as the extension of the orchestra tax which offers a tax relief to instrumental groups.
“Covid halved music’s economic contribution to the UK economy from almost £6 billion a year to £3.1 billion in 2020. If the Government strikes the right note by delivering the support we need, our music industry will come back stronger and bigger than ever,” Njoku-Goodwin added.
He also said ministers need to put “turbo-chargers” under efforts to clear barriers that are still making touring in the EU difficult.
He added: “As the domestic music market recovers, the Government should also build on recent trade deals by giving more funding and support for music exports.
“As well as music’s huge economic and cultural importance, we also need to see the Government fully recognise its huge value to our wellbeing by properly funding music education to help nurture our talent pipeline and provide the stars of the future.”
A recent report by UK Music revealed one in three music industry jobs were lost due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
It also found that 69,000 UK music industry jobs were lost during, noting that many self-employed people in the industry were “not eligible” for government support.