Today Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced $250 million worth of grants and loans under a COVID-19 recovery package for the Australian arts industry, stressing that the government has been listening to our artists and the unique struggles our sector has faced during this crisis.
“Many in the sector will find a new way to operate while the current social distancing measures remain in place and while that won’t be easy, I know there’s a strong desire among all Australians to see the return of gigs, performances and events, “ Prime Minister Morrison said. “This is going in over the next 12 months”, he explained, “unlike other countries that are rolling out funding over four years.”
Guidelines about how the loans and grants will be distributed will be released in the coming weeks, but the basics are as below:
- $75 million for a competitive grants program to provide capital for new festivals, concerts, tours and events as social distancing restrictions ease. Grants will range from $75,000 to $2 million
- $90 million in concessional loans to help fund new productions. Loans will be delivered through commercial banks with a Commonwealth guarantee
- $50 million to help film and television producers who have been unable to access insurance due to COVID-19 to secure finance and restart production
- $35 million in direct financial assistance for Commonwealth-funded organisations which are struggling to stay viable, including theatre, dance, music and circus.
Australian’s are hopeful that these grants and loans will help the performing arts industry to survive and thrive over the coming years. Only time will tell, but it is wonderful to at least finally be reconsigned as the vibrant, talented and important industry that we are.