Profile of the Creative Economy in Puerto Rico (Summary)

Summary-Report: Profile of the Creative Economy in Puerto Rico (pdf)

By: Javier J. Hernández Acosta

Creative Economy has become a topic of great interest in Puerto Rico. Its potential contribution to economic development should promote public policies oriented toward this important sector. There is a need to develop research that aims to provide tools to strengthen and promote growth in the creative industries in Puerto Rico. The data obtained through the Economic Census allow establishing a general profile throughout sectors for the case of Puerto Rico.

In order to contribute to the public policy agenda for the creative economy in Puerto Rico, Inversión Cultural have developed the report: “The Profile of the Creative Economy in Puerto Rico” using the latest data from the Economic Census for Puerto Rico. The findings in this report demonstrate the need to initiate a broader research agenda, using a multidisciplinary approach, to help understand the dynamics and contributions of the creative sector in Puerto Rico.

We used data from the 2007 Economic Census and the 2011 "Country Business Patterns", through the UNCTAD classifications (Creative Economy Report 2010) and an analysis by sub-sectors of the creative industries. According to these data, in Puerto Rico there are about 1,889 businesses in the creative industries that employ over 14,715 people. The annual payroll for the creative industries is $436 million, for an average salary of $26,632. The estimated economic contribution of creative industries for the year 2011 was approximately $1.74 billion. This represents 4.29% of total businesses, 2.65% of the total annual payroll, 1.37% of total employment and 2.67% of the GDP for 2011.

From the 1,889 businesses in the creative industries, 36% (726) were in the Film and Media sector, 24% (446) belonged to the Visual Arts and Crafts, 15% (293) in Design, 12% (222) in the Performing Arts, 10% (188) in Literary and Publishing, and 1% (14) in Heritage and Museums. The Film and Media sector generates 47% of the jobs with 6,889, followed by 2,729 in Literary and Publishing, which represents a 19%.

The Visual and Performing Arts sectors represent 24% and 12% of the total creative industries in Puerto Rico; however, in terms of employment, it only generate 14% and 6%, respectively. The total revenue has the same trend, with the Film and Media sector with 48% of the total, equivalent to $832.8 millions. The Literary and Publishing sector has total revenue of $336 million, the Visual Arts and Crafts of $234 million, $214 million for Design and the Performing Arts and Heritage contributed with another $130 million between both.

The main creative industries in terms of employment are Electronic Equipment, Press, Jewelries, Advertising and Television. Between 2007-2011, following the sub-sectors classification, there was a reduction of approximately 11% in the economic activity of the creative industries. The reduction in total businesses was 1%, although the sector of Literary and Publishing had a reduction of 29%, and 10% in Design. The Film and Media sector had an increase of 13%. The Literary and Publishing sector had the highest reduction in employment with 33% and 30% in annual payroll. The Performing Arts sector had a reduction of 29% in the total jobs. The only sector that experiment an increase in the employment indicator was the Film and Media with 4%.

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