The spectre of Brexit is looming ever more worryingly for the UK: our favourite recent one-liner of political analysis was that nobody who’s enthusiastic about leaving the EU is competent enough to make the process a success, and nobody who’s competent to deliver that is enthusiastic about Brexit.
But at least when it comes to music exports, the UK continues to be doing rather well. Industry body the BPI reported this morning that overseas earnings by British labels grew by 11% to £365m in 2016, with artists including Adele, Coldplay, the Rolling Stones and the late David Bowie playing key roles.
The BPI says that this decade, international earnings for UK labels have grown by 72.3%, and that British artists accounted for one in eight album sales globally last year. And this was before Ed Sheeran made his return.
“With Britain leaving the EU, the UK needs businesses that are true global superstars,” said Geoff Taylor. “The global digital streaming market represents a huge new opportunity. Government can help to seize that opportunity by making sure our artists can tour freely post-Brexit and that third countries robustly protect music rights.”