Culture industry suffers lockdown blow 

Traditional entertainment services lose out in Q1 as millions are confined to the homes, but coronavirus quarantine helps boost new media and tech revenue  

by Nadeem Xu
Culture industry suffers lockdown blow 
A cinema in Hangzhou. Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Huandy618

(ATF) Revenue among Chinese “cultural companies” slumped in the first quarter as the coronavirus epidemic curbed sales of books, visits to the cinema and other traditional entertainment pursuits.  

Total revenue in the sector fell 13.9% to 1.69 trillion yuan ($239.8 billion) in the first three months of the year from a year ago, according to a report by the National Bureau of Statistics following a survey of 59,000 firms.

Book sales, tourism services and other such diversions were badly hit by the fallout from the epidemic, which saw millions confined to their homes and entire industries shuttered. 

Manufacturers of cultural products saw their revenue decline 18.5% in the period to 659.6bn yuan, while retailers and wholesalers in the sector recorded a 27.3% sales decline to 264.8bn yuan. Cultural service providers generated revenue of 764.5bn yuan, down 2.9%.

Operators of entertainment and recreational facilities suffered from a 59.1% decrease in revenue to 1.19 billion yuan.

News and information providers, however, enjoyed 11.6% growth to 173.9bn yuan. Also, new cultural firms engaged in 16 businesses including online media, games and the manufacturing of drones, wearables and smart devices benefited from the epidemic with revenue growing 15.5% to 523.6bn yuan.