Live Performance Australia (LPA), the industry’s body in the country, has welcomed the Labor party’s policy plans on ticketing and music.

The party has reportedly promised to commit Aus$28m (€18m/£16m/$20m) towards live music, education and the wider music community, if the party is elected into government next year. Those expected to benefit from the funding include youth music groups, recording companies and music teachers.

LPA chief executive Evelyn Richardson said that Australians spent Aus$1.88bn on tickets for live performances during 2017.

“Measures to improve the integrity of ticket sales and provide better protections for consumers, artists and producers are welcome and long overdue,” Richardson said, according to Mirage News.

She also claims that the industry body has been calling for action in this area for a while now and they are “pleased” to see Labor is prepared to take practical action.

Richardson continued: “While we welcome any legislation that protects consumers, we also need to ensure rogue operators in the market, such as Viagogo, are stopped.

“There is no point having legislation if all it does is increase Viagogo’s market share, which we estimate to be well over 80 per cent. Government needs to protect consumers from Viagogo and close them down when they don’t comply with Australian law.”

The measures announced by Labor are consistent with those supported by LPA members, Richardson noted. The body wants to work closely with the government to ensure a “better deal” for consumers, as well as LPA’s artists, performers, promoters and producers of live performances.

Labor has committed to introduce a comprehensive contemporary music policy, including support for a revitalised ‘Sounds Australia’ to promote Australian music internationally. Sounds Australia works to raise the profile of Australian contemporary music in key international music markets. The initiative can expect to receive Aus$10m worth of funding as part of the Aus$28m pledged.

Richardson added: “The music industry is a mainstay of our live performance industry and Labor’s commitment should encourage an even bigger and better Australian music industry at home and leverage opportunities for industry growth in a competitive global market.

“However, we believe that a national music policy should recognise the value of all music genres from contemporary to classical. Live music is not a one size fits all and government investment should reflect that.”

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