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Australian sport worth $12.8 billion in income, employs 134,000

Australian sport worth $12.8 billion in income, employs 134,000
October 24, 2013

The size and significance of sport to Australians and the national economy was reinforced today with the release of data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) which shows that Australian sport was worth $12.8 billion in income and employed about 134,000 Australians in 2011/12.

Australian Sports Commission Chief Executive Simon Hollingsworth welcomed the Value of Sport, Australia, 2013 report published by the ABS which quantified the economic impact of the sport sector and the number of people involved in sport.

Hollingsworth explained "This data shows the economic importance of sport for Australia, which are in addition to the well-known health and social benefits.

"This report is an insightful and useful analysis of the economics of Australias sporting sector, which notably includes a sizeable export component."

ABS data released today showed the sport and recreation industries generated $12.8 billion in income and employed about 134,000 Australians in 2011/12.

The data also highlighted the fact that the sport and recreation sector has the nations highest volunteer base with some 2.3 million people volunteering.

Hollingsworth added "our national sporting organisations assist in providing a platform for the 3.8 million Australians involved each year in organised sport around the country.

"The many thousands of sporting contests which take place around Australia each week are dependent on the passion and commitment of the people who volunteer.

"This report serves to remind us of how important sport is to millions of Australians."

ABS Director Andrew Middleton said that in addition to providing significant health and social benefits, sport and physical recreation has considerable economic importance, which is reflected in the latest household expenditure, production and international trade data.

Middleton explained "Australia exported over $358 million in sport and recreation goods in 2012-13, up 26% from the previous year.

"We found that Singapore has become a major destination for exports of Australian sporting goods and services.

"The value of these exports to Singapore rose from $15.6 million in 2011/12 to $73.4 million in 2012/13."

Australian households spent over $8.2 billion on selected sport and recreation products in 2009/10. This included $4.4 billion spent on sports and recreation services (such as sports facility hire charges and health and fitness studio charges) and $2.9 billion on sports, physical recreation and camping equipment, including swimming pools.

Further details are in Value of Sport, Australia, 2013 (cat. no. 4156.0.55.002) which is available for free download from the ABS website at www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/4156.0.55.002

Image courtesy of Centennial Parklands.

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