Economic Contribution of Sport

Economic Contribution of Sport          
Prepared by  Prepared by: Chris Hume and Dr Ralph Richards, Senior Research Consultants, Clearinghouse for Sport, Sport Australia
evaluated by  Evaluation by: Dr Liam Lenten, Senior Lecturer, Department of Economics and Finance, La Trobe University (December 2016)
Reviewed by  Reviewed by network: Australian Sport Information Network (AUSPIN)
Last updated  Last updated: 18 April 2019
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The economic contribution of a specific sector in terms of its 'value' is often used by governments to better inform public policy and investment.

All sectors of the economy generally leverage public infrastructure and assets to provide a range of benefits. The aim in many cases is to balance available resources (while reconciling costs, barriers and liabilities) with outcomes that represent best value. This value can be measured as a return on investment.

Sport, as a sector, uses substantial resources (land, labour, capital, infrastructure) but also provides a wide range of benefits to the Australian community and wider economy.

It is important for sporting organisations, and the Australian sport sector more broadly, to understand the potential and actual impact that sport can have on a local, regional, and national economy. Insights such as these can help influence and build a strong case when advocating for recognition, investment and support. 

Key Messages 


Australia's sport sector (including for-profit sport related activities) makes a significant 'per capita' contribution to the Australian economy and accounts for approximately 2% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).


According to the most recent ABS report, Value of Sport, Australia (2013), the combined value of the sport sector in 2011-12 was $12.8 billion.


A number of Australian sporting organisations (including Surf Life Saving Australia, Equestrian Australia, Golf Australia, Football NSW/FFA, and the Confederation of Australian Motorsport) have produced reports demonstrating their value to the Australian economy.

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