The impact of Channel 4 on the UK independent sector, creative industries and the economy

17 Aug 2007

Channel 4's on-screen contribution to UK public service broadcasting is well-known: since its establishment in 1982, Channel 4's track record of innovation, creativity, and quality in programming has been well recognised by the industry, the Office of Communications and the UK Government. Less well known is Channel 4's off-screen contribution to the UK independent production sector, the creative industry and, ultimately, the economy. Channel 4 asked PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC), to assess its unique economic contribution, or impact, off-screen. The executive summary is available online.

Channel 4 is most obviously in the business of entertaining viewers. But its role extends beyond that. Set out in the 2003 Communications Act, its remit impels it to go further ? from its establishment in 1982, Channel 4 has had to create and nurture a thriving independent sector in order to commission innovative programmes and even pioneer new programme genres. Since 1998, Channel 4 is also obliged to support the production of content outside the M25, based upon a range of measures. Channel 4?s impact is significant: PwC's analysis suggests that the overall economic impact of Channel 4 could be worth up to ?2bn in UK Gross Value Added in 2006, and could support 22,000 jobs, spread across the regions in the UK economy.

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