Statistics find arts jobs have declined by 18 per cent since coronavirus outbreak

The arts sector was second only to hospitality

Figures released on Tuesday (April 21) from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show the impact the coronavirus pandemic has had on jobs in the arts sector so far.

Between March 14 and April 4, the three-week period after Australia recorded its 100th COVID-19 case, jobs decreased by six per cent across the board in Australia. However, the brunt was not shared equally across all industries.

According to the data, the hardest industries hit have been the hospitality and arts sectors, with 25.6 per cent and 18.7 per cent of job losses, respectively. The third highest category, mining, trails behind at a noticeable distance with 8.4 per cent.


“The largest impact of net job losses, in percentage terms, was for people aged under 20, for whom jobs decreased by 9.9 per cent,” said ABS statistician Bjorn Jarvis in a statement.

“Tasmania and Victoria had the largest decreases in jobs, down by 7.3 per cent and 6.8 per cent.”

The new statistics follow figures previously released by the ABS that found only 47 per cent of businesses in the arts and recreation industry reported that they were operating in the week commencing March 30.

Earlier this week, the Grattan Institute published a report predicting more than half of all arts and hospitality jobs will be wiped out due to the pandemic. All up, the think tank expects up to a quarter of Australians to lose their jobs.