Fine Gael TD for Galway West and Mayo South Sean Kyne has welcomed the strong Galway contribution in shaping a new report from the Oireachtas Jobs Committee on supporting the Creative Economy.
Two days of hearings took place in April at Leinster House with engagement from a variety of stakeholders including representatives from NUI Galway’s Whitaker Institute, the Western Development Commission and TG 4 ahead of the publication of the report last week.
Entitled ‘Examining the Potential for Jobs Creation, Innovation and Balanced Economic Development in the Creative Economy’, the Report makes 23 recommendations to the Government on how best to support and further develop the Creative Economy across the country.
Among the recommendations are:
- The establishment of a dedicated long term, multi-annual strategy for the sector
- The establishment of centres of excellence, creative hubs, shared work-spaces and craft centres
- The foundation of a Creative Industries Council
- The strengthening of the local authorities’ role of support, funding and provision of infrastructure to include the employment of ‘Creative Sectors’ Officers’
- The development of large-scale production studios and the strategic use of State or Council-owned properties
- The development of funding strategies and financial incentives for the sector with the assistance of Local Enterprise Offices.
Commented Deputy Kyne, who is a member of the Oireachtas Committee on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation:
“The Creative Economy is extremely prevalent in Galway particularly during the summer months with the Film Fleadh and the International Arts Festival as well as festivals around the county such as the Clifden Arts Festival.
“At the hearings in Leinster House the Western Development Commission confirmed that there are over 5,000 businesses in the West with 11,000 direct employees in the Creative Economy generating over €534 million each year.
“The figures demonstrate how vital the Creative Economy is in Galway across our city and county. On top of the world-class festivals we are fortunate to have craft and design hubs across the county in Connemara and on our islands as well as the coveted designation as a UNESCO City of Film.
“As the Report makes clear we need a co-ordinated approach which involves all of the Government departments and the State organisations. The recommendations are comprehensive and provide the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht with practical steps to take to further develop the Creative Economy.
“The implementation of the recommendations would benefit not only the direct participants – artists, designers, craft workers, film-makers among others – but also businesses and communities across the West in terms of employment, tourism and recreation.”
The Report from the Oireachtas Committee on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation is available at http://www.oireachtas.ie/parliament/media/committees/jobsenterpriseandinnovation/Final-Report.pdf