In 2015, the direct economic impact of culture, i.e. the total value-added of all areas of culture, amounted to some 43 billion euros. The proportional value of culture within the economy as a whole fell to 2.2%, the lowest it has been for twenty years. For the purposes of comparison, the value-added of the hotel and catering industry was worth 55 billion euros in 2015.
Compared with 2008, there has been zero growth across all areas of culture, which is due to the various ongoing economic crises affecting the sectors of architecture (down 2.3% year-on-year since 2008), press and book publishing (down 2.1% and 1.7% respectively, year-on-year) and advertising agencies (down 1.5% year-on-year). Conversely, sectors such as audiovisual (up 1.7% year-on-year) and cultural heritage (up 2.8% year-on-year) are experiencing a boom. Audiovisual and the performing arts are the two biggest cultural sectors in terms of their contribution to the cultural economy and, together, represent 44% of the value-added of all the cultural sectors combined.
As a result of this sluggish economic situation, employment in the cultural sector continues its downward trajectory (down 3.6% on 2014) and has fallen below 600,000 jobs. The cultural sector has lost 80,000 jobs since 2011.