The Economic Impact of Sport in Australia

Economic Impact of Sport in Australia

The sporting scene in Australia is a mixture of entertainment, passion, and culture. Australian citizens exhibit undeniable love for their favorite sporting activities, from cricket to rugby, football, and swimming. The country so loves sports that Australians are eager to shell their income on sports.

In this article by Kate Richardson of Mightytips Australia, we look at the impact of sports on the Australian economy.

What Is The Most Popular Sport In Australia?

Swimming is Australia’s most popular sport, with over three million citizens actively involved in the sport. However, times are changing as Cricket is posing an increasing challenge to swimming dominance in the country. Other popular sports in the country include Basketball, Tennis, Rugby, and Soccer.

Currently, cricket is fast becoming Australia’s favorite sport in 2021. This is largely due to the team nature of the game, as several people can play simultaneously.

Economic Impact of Sport in Australia

According to the statistics released by the Australian Bureau of Labor Statistics (ABS), sports accounts for more than 12% of total spending on leisure and recreation – a sector that comprises arts, cinemas, books, and tourism alongside sports, exercise, and games.

Sport Australia jobs play a vital role in the employment of citizens within the country. According to 2011 Census data published in the country, sports provide direct employment to the following number of people:

  • 25,000 fitness instructors
  • 3,000 sports umpires
  • 2,500 boat builders and repairers
  • 3,500 sports center managers
  • 10,000 swimming instructors
  • 1,6000 soccer players.

Sports contribute tremendously to the overall well-being of communities within the country. Many Australians spend lots of time playing sports. A survey carried out by the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows adult participation in sports stands at 60% or more.

Sport also brings millions of spectators into the country annually, spurring revenue from the hospitality sector. An excellent example is the Australian Open tennis tournament hosted annually.

The Australian Football League and National Rugby League Grand Finals attract more than 3 million viewers from all parts of the country. For this reason, there is high demand for pay-TV stations across the country.

For this reason, almost all firms in the country find value in attaching themselves to popular sporting tournaments to boost awareness for their product, build their brand, and increase their customer base.

The Numbers don’t lie.

It is essential to note that sporting events such as the AFL and NRL, and the Australian Open tennis tournament are multi-million dollar initiatives. For example, the Australian Football League (AFL) revenues exceeded 480 million Australian dollars in 2015 alone. In addition, the broadcast rights agreement for the last five years has provided a cash flow of $2.5 billion to the sports industry.

Also, the number of employed individuals by the AFL stood at 16,000 staff in 2015. These numbers include players, umpires, and other groups of individuals.

For example, the Australian Open tennis competition earns the country over $200 million yearly. Bettors also join in on the largesse as they get to stake on Western Australia Sport online. You can find more information on sports betting on this site.

The economic impact of sports on communities

There are many benefits sports bring to communities around the country. We shall discuss some of them below:

  • Higher productivity

Research shows that many physically active communities record significant health and social benefits while improving productivity in their workplace. Studies in the county show that improved healthcare costs for managing diseases exacerbated by physical activities such as colon cancer, heart disease, and depression could be as high as 9 billion Australian dollars.

Better health status means fewer days spent on sick leave. Therefore, people become more productive by spending more days in the office than out of it.

  • Job creation

Sports create jobs for many people around the country. Sports journalists, advertisers, referees, and players are employed through sports. Most communities have lots of unemployed youths. Sports will ensure that these youths do what they enjoy, and get paid at the same time.

Communities with little or no sport activity tend to experience a high rate of crimes. Often, these crimes are committed by youths with no employment.

Sports effect on economic growth

Economic Impact of Sport in Australia

Sports are a significant unifying factor among people of different colors, political affiliations, and ideas. Therefore, it helps build communities through social inclusion and a sense of unity. In Australia, sports help confront anti-social behavior such as drugs and supports education. Individual sports such as cycling promote the use of active means of transport. In addition, sports bring a sense of national pride among Australians.

The sense of unity, social inclusion, and bond sports create within the country boost economic growth. When people are happy, they are likely to engage in productive activities that will benefit the nation.

So sports stimulate economic growth. Sports attract business investment and structures that create employment and boost other sectors. For example, during the Australian Open tennis competition, millions of people come into Australia to watch, analyze, or support their favorite players.


The high influx of people boosts the hospitality and tourism sector of the economy. Subsequently, the tournament attracts lots of media attention. So the advertising sector of the economy gets more attention since many people would like to advertise their products on television during the games.

The Australian Grand Prix (car racing competition) is another event that attracts lots of business interest. Car manufacturers use the event to create awareness about their cars and engines. The step boosts the automotive industry in the country.

So sports not only gives people satisfying things to watch and play during their spare time, it is a significant source of revenue for the nation.

Read Also: Why Do We Sing the National Anthem at Sporting Events?

The Economic Impact of Sport in Australia

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