Cape film boost for economy

20 July 2007

The Western Cape’s growing film industry contributed an estimated R3.5-billion to South Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP) in the 2006/07 financial year, according to a study commissioned by the Cape Film Commission.

Total turnover for the Western Cape film industry was estimated at R2.65-billion for the year, with about 77% (R2.03-billion) of this located in Cape Town.

Barry Standish and Antony Boting from the University of Cape Town’s Graduate School of Business carried out the study earlier this year.

The study estimates that 30 long form productions, 600 commercials and 2 100 stills productions were made in the Western Cape in 2006/07.

Long form productions, with a turnover of R1.12-billion, was the largest part of the industry, followed by commercials at R0.87-billion and stills at an estimated R0.66-billion. Inside of long form, feature films added R934.3-million and made-for-TV productions R181.3-million.

Service commercials made up the largest part of the local commercials industry, with a turnover of R631.8-million in 2006/07, followed by local commercials (R162.5-million) and international commercials (R77.9-million).

Creating jobs
The study estimates that the film industry created at least 6 058 full year job equivalents in the Western Cape, of which 1 841 were in long form, 2 459 in commercials and 1 758 in stills. It is estimated that about 4 638 (77%) of these direct jobs were in Cape Town.

Estimates are that 2 501 “indirect jobs” were also created in the province through linkages to the film industry, 1 915 of which were in Cape Town.

“In total, between 7.9 and 8.2 direct and indirect jobs are created in South Africa for every R1-million spend on production,” the study found.

Knock-on effect
Catering and accommodation had the most film-related indirect jobs, followed by business services, the general business sector, financial services, and machinery and equipment renting and leasing.

The study also found that the film industry is an important contributor to “bed nights” in South Africa, with at least 313 576 bed nights generated throughout the country in 2006/07.

Of these, at least 252 000 were generated in the Western Cape, represents 10.7% of the estimated total 2.36-million business bed nights in the province for the year.

SouthAfrica.info reporter

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