Removal of lock out laws the start of a long road ahead for live music in Sydney

Friday, 29 Nov 2019

APRA AMCOS welcomes the NSW Government removal of the lockouts in the Sydney CBD and Oxford St and its response to the Joint Select Committee’s report on Sydney's Night Time Economy.

“The removal of lockouts and the NSW Government’s response to the report is the first major step to help revive and reimagine Sydney’s night time economy,” said APRA AMCOS CEO Dean Ormston.

“It is critical that unnecessary restrictions on live music are removed, arts and culture is supported and encouraged and that small bars are fostered to help establish a safe and diverse night time economy.”

APRA AMCOS also welcomes the appointment of Tourism Minister Stuart Ayres as minister responsible for the implementation and review of the NSW Government response.

"Government investment and support of cultural and live music activity in city centres not only promotes safer night time economies, it proves to be a major drawcard for tourism and visitation,” Mr Ormston said.

“Sydney‘s reputation as an international destination has suffered since 2014 but it’s not irretrievable. We look forward to working with the NSW Government on a rejuvenated vision for Sydney as a globally vibrant and liveable city. To do this we must set our sights high for Sydney and what makes it unique.

“With the release of the Government's response the hard work has begun. We encourage the Government and the City of Sydney to now work in partnership with industry to develop a broad based strategy to support existing live music venues while also incentivising the development of new venues, whether they be in existing cultural institutions, restaurants, small bars or in new exciting spaces.”

APRA AMCOS also re-iterates its call for the City of Sydney to pursue the development of an entertainment precinct for the city, as the ‘agent of change’ principle may not encourage the development of new live music venues.

APRA AMCOS data shows that there has been a 50 per cent decline in venues primarily dedicated to live music in the City of Sydney local government area since 2014.

“In just the last twelve months, Canberra and Perth have tabled plans for special entertainment precincts similar to those created in Brisbane. Sydney should now look at incorporating a similar model to ensure there is a concerted effort to revive Sydney’s proud live music history,” Mr Ormston said.

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