UK music exports could reach £1 billion in 2023 (number of the day)

·3-min read
More than 300 British artists have already achieved over 100 million global streams, among whom Dua Lipa (L) and Sam Smith (R).

While British artists dread losing access to European audiences as a result of Brexit, a new report reveals that UK music exports could grow up to more than £1 billion a year by 2030. An impressive figure that requires "a focus on new markets and support from the British government."

Goldman Sachs predicted that global revenues from recorded music will rise to almost $40 billion (£30 billion) by 2030, as consumers in emerging countries are driving demand for on-demand music subscription services such as Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer and Amazon Music.

If UK music exports continue their growth rate as the market expands, they will surpass the £1 billion mark over the same period, according to a recent report by the British Phonographic Industry. A symbolic figure that is more than the double of the current revenues from record music exports. They reached £489 million in 2019, the highest level in two decades, and up from £211 million in 2010.

Additionally, the report reveals that British music is particularly sought-after in overseas markets, such as the US, Germany, France and Australia. More than 300 British artists have already achieved over 100 million global streams, including superstar artists like Ed Sheeran and Adele as well as fresh talents Dua Lipa, Stormzy, Lewis Capaldi and Harry Styles. What's more, Spotify figures reveal that 80 percent of all streams of UK artists come from abroad.

"Alongside long-established markets in Europe, North America and Australasia, where our music has traditionally been hugely popular, exports opportunities are now also growing in rapidly-expanding new markets across Asia and South America, while rising demand in Africa and in the Middle East adds new prospects for British artists and music. However the expansion of the global streaming market also means stiffer competition, with smaller countries such as the UK having to work harder to gain a share of listening on streaming platforms worldwide," commented the BPI in the report.

"To promote British music as easily as possible"

That is why the organization is calling for the UK government to renew the Music Export Growth Scheme (MEGS), which is funded by the Department for International Trade. Since launching in 2014, hundreds of artists have reportedly been backed in their overseas touring and promotion, boosting exports by £46.5 million -- a return of £12 for every pound invested. The BPI is also petitioning for the introduction of a music production tax credit, a raise in the standards of copyright protection and their enforcement in key export markets, as well as an agreement with the EU and third countries "to enable artists and crews to tour and promote their music as easily as possible."

"We are at a pivotal moment for British music on the global stage. As the UK works to build back from covid-19 and forge its future as an independent trading nation, music can play a vitally important cultural and economic role. Because of streaming, our country has a huge opportunity to connect artists with fans in ways never before possible. There is a £1 billion prize to be gained for the UK, which would benefit artists, fans and the UK economy alike," BPI chief executive Geoff Taylor said in a statement.