Africa’s creative industries hold significant economic potential for the continent, according to filmmaker, Anant Singh. As South Africa’s leading film producer, he is widely acknowledged for his efforts to create a global profile for the South African film industry and the country’s creative talent.
Looking at the African film industry in particular, Singh drew attention to the success of the South African and Nigerian film industries which contribute substantially to their respective country’s GDP, while the developing film industries of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Egypt show a great deal of promise.
It is estimated that the South African film industry contributed R10 billion to the country’s GDP, creating more than 25 000 full time jobs. In Nigeria, the film industry contributes 1.4% of the GDP, employing more than 1 million people, the second largest employer in the country
Similarly, other disciplines of Africa’s creative industries, the visual and performing arts, including music, theatre and traditional arts and crafts have caught the attention of the world largely due to its unique and distinctive offerings, thereby taking its rightful place on the global stage. The cultural industries also impact positively on a range of other industries, among which are tourism, hospitality, transport, etc. The United Kingdom is a great example of the economic potential of the creative industries which collectively make up some of the biggest export products of the country.
“The potential of the creative industries for Africa is enormous. As a continent, we are just beginning to tap into this potential through our exceptional visual and performing arts, and new media platforms. Opportunities now exist where there were none previously as the world is ready for unique and fresh cultural and entertainment content created in Africa,” said Singh. “It must be noted that the cultural industries are becoming increasingly important internationally as they contribute significantly to the economy as key drivers and revenue generators. As Africa, we should get our fair share of this valuable pie,” concluded Singh.
Singh is currently participating in the World Economic Forum’s Africa Summit in Cape Town, where he will chair the session entitled Africa’s Creative Industries tomorrow (Thursday, 4 June). Panelists joining this session include Salim Amin, Chairman of the Kenyan based A24 Media/Camerapix and acclaimed South African musical icon and UNICEF ambassador, Yvonne Chaka Chaka Mhinga.
Last month the International Women’s Forum (IWF) bestowed their Legacy Award to Singh for his work and exemplary achievements in highlighting the role and significance of the strength of the female voice. This marked the first time in the history of the IWF that the organization honored a man with their coveted award.
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