18,000 filming days in London per year

As the 58th BFI London Film Festival launches, the government has released figures showing the economic benefit that the film industry brings to the capital.

Big Ben in Edge of TomorrowEdge of Tomorrow

The UK is the third largest film market in the world, and its talent, locations, facilities and crew are more in demand than ever before - as we recently pointed out in our overview of Hollywood productions shooting in the UK.

Figures show the total UK spend for film so far this year is almost £750m, with £600m coming from inward investment - a strong start to the year and a significant increase on the same point in 2013.

This is no surprise with measures such as tax relief and the removal of red tape and permit obstructions making it easier to film on Britain's streets. In particular, London has seen a huge production surge, with a recorded 18,000 filming days taking place in the past year. The capital is now the third busiest place for filming in the world following New York and Los Angeles.

The tax relief and the latest additions to it will ensure that the UK remains attractive to foreign producers in the future as well. The government has calculated that the UK's creative industries, and in particular film,  make a tremendous contribution to economic growth - for every £1 invested through the Film Tax Relief, £12 is generated for the UK's GDP. 

The latest statistics from the British Film Institute show that the film industry turnover in the UK is £7.3bn with exports of £1.3bn and a UK film trade surplus of £789m. The UK film production spend in 2013 was £1.1bn with £860m from inward investment productions, up 28% on the previous year.

Film London, the capital's film commission, have also released a set of statistics which show who plays a pivotal role in attracting filming to the capital and reveals that the film industry supports almost 90,000 jobs in the capital, directly generating approximately 33,000 full-time jobs in London.

Their figures also indicate there is an average of 50 different crews filming on the streets of London on any given day.

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey said: "Government has worked hard to create the right environment for the sector to flourish and it's working - filmmakers around the world are flocking to the UK, and to London in particular. The message is clear, and it's being heard. The UK is the best place to make film."

 CEO of the BFI, Amanda Nevill said: "As the BFI London Film Festival gets underway, the picture for UK film is vibrant and buoyant. The government's solid commitment to the screen industries combined with our fantastic talent, skills and infrastructure is keeping the UK at the top of its game, and making a vital and growing contribution to the economic health of the UK."