A range of new grant and loan programs will roll out over the next 12
months to different parts of the arts sector to support the $112
billion creative economy and the more than 600,000 Australians it
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the commercial arts and
entertainment sector was one of the first sectors to be impacted by
COVID-19 and will be one of the last to come out of hibernation as
social distancing restrictions are eased.
“Our JobMaker plan is getting their show back on the road, to get their workers back in jobs,” the Prime Minister said.
“We’re delivering the capital these businesses need so they can start
working again and support the hundreds of thousands of Australians who
make their living in the creative economy.
“These measures will support a broad range of jobs from performers,
artists and roadies, to front of house staff and many who work behind
the scenes, while assisting related parts of the broader economy, such
as tourism and hospitality.
“This package is as much about supporting the tradies who build stage
sets or computer specialists who create the latest special effects, as
it is about supporting actors and performers in major productions.
“Many in the sector will find a new way to operate while the current
social distancing measures remain in place and while that won’t be easy I
know there’s a strong desire among all Australians to see the return of
gigs, performances and events.
The support package includes:
- Seed Investment to Reactivate Productions and Tours – $75 million in
competitive grant funding in 2020-21 through the Restart Investment to
Sustain and Expand (RISE) Fund. This program will provide capital to
help production and event businesses to put on new festivals, concerts,
tours and events as social distancing restrictions ease, including
through innovative operating and digital delivery models. Grants of
varying sizes will be available, from $75,000 through to $2 million.
- Show Starter Loans – $90 million in concessional loans to assist
creative economy businesses to fund new productions and events that
stimulate job creation and economic activity. The loans program will
complement the RISE Fund and will be delivered through commercial banks,
backed by a 100 per cent Commonwealth guarantee.
- Kick-starting Local Screen Production – $50 million for a Temporary
Interruption Fund, to be administered by Screen Australia, that will
support local film and television producers to secure finance and start
filming again, supporting thousands of jobs in the sector. Filming of
new productions has largely been halted as insurers are not providing
coverage for COVID-19.
- Supporting Sustainability of Sector-Significant Organisations – $35
million to provide direct financial assistance to support significant
Commonwealth-funded arts and culture organisations facing threats to
their viability due to COVID-19, which may include organisations in
fields including theatre, dance, circus, music and other fields. The
Government will partner with the Australia Council to deliver this
- Creative Economy Taskforce – establishment of a ministerial
taskforce to partner with the Government and the Australia Council to
implement the JobMaker plan for the creative economy.
Minister for Arts Paul Fletcher said the comprehensive package will
deliver jobs and give creative and cultural experiences back to
“We are backing over 600,000 Australians in the cultural and creative
sectors whose work contributes $112 billion to our economy. These
sectors have been hit hard during the pandemic, and the Government’s
investment will play an important role in the nation’s economic
recovery,” Minister Fletcher said.
“We are injecting $100 million per month into the arts sector through
the JobKeeper program and cash flow assistance, delivering an important
lifeline for many businesses, but as social distancing restrictions
ease, our plan supports businesses getting back on their feet and
getting people back in jobs.”
Following the successful development of COVID-19 safe working
guidelines to support the reopening of our National Collecting
Institutions and the screen sector, the Government is working with the
Australia Council to develop broader guidelines for the arts and
entertainment sector to protect the public and workers. The Prime
Minister will also seek approval from National Cabinet to give our
entertainment industry greater certainty about the timetable for them to
be able to re-activate their business, so they can better plan their
In coming weeks, the guidelines for the grant and loan programs will
be released and the members of the Creative Economy Taskforce will be
This plan builds on previously announced measures, including the
injection of $100 million per month into the arts through JobKeeper and
cashflow support over April and May; $10 million for regional and remote
organisations; $7 million to Indigenous Art Centres; $10 million to
Support Act to assist with mental health and crisis support; the
Australia Council's $5 millionResilience Fund and flexible management of existing funding agreements with Government.
This package also builds on the Government’s investment of $749
million in the arts and cultural industry in 2019-20 – the largest
amount ever provided to the sector. The package is in addition to the
support being provided by state and territory governments, totalling
more than $150 million.