Cape Town - The R522m generated from the Cape Town International Jazz Festival shows that the cultural industry has major economic potential, said Minister of Arts and Culture Paul Mashatile.
"While we know that culture helps drive social cohesion, we are steadily seeing in South Africa that the cultural and creative industries go even further by contributing towards economic growth which helps create jobs and sustainable livelihoods," said Mashatile.
Despite global financial pressures, the Cape Town event contributed an 8.5% increase in overall economic value to the Western Cape gross domestic product in 2013.
The jazz event created 2 721 additional employment opportunities across several different industries, 410 of which were exclusively dependent on the festival.
The average spend per group (3.8 persons) was R4 452.86 over the two-day period in 2013, compared to R3 368.82 in 2012 and R3 628.60 in 2011, showed a survey by espAfrika, the event's organisers.
Accommodation accounted for the largest spending category, with the majority of revellers preferring to stay in hotels.
While the percentage of foreign visitors and group size were lower, visitors still spent an average of 3.4 nights in and around the Mother City.
Six percent of visitors stayed 10 or more nights, representing an increase of 3% on 2012.
This year also recorded more visitors from African countries than in previous years while Germany, Switzerland, Canada, France and the USA made up the long-haul foreign attendants.
“We are delighted to see that the festival is established now as a reliable source of excellent entertainment," said Rashid Lombard, CEO of espAfrika and the festival’s director.
He said it has an increasingly loyal following of people who purchase the full weekend pass, which amounted to 65% (37 000) of all ticket-holders.
“These figures reaffirm that the CTIJF (jazz festival) is more than an entertainment event," said Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille.
She said it is a major boost to the economy of Cape Town and the Western Cape.
"It brings much-needed tourism revenue that benefits a whole range of industries in Cape Town and most critically job creation in the city.”
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