The music industry of East Asia, a region that includes Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Japan, Mongolia, North Korea, South Korea and Taiwan is a rapidly growing economic sector that is home to some of the world's largest music markets.
In 2012, Japan surpassed the United States as the world's largest recorded music market for the first time, according to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry. Though the U.S. remained the largest if licensing fees are included into the figures. However, in the following year, Japan fell back to the second-largest music market after experiencing a 16.7 per cent decrease due to the country's reliance of CDs and slow adoption of digital services.
Although global physical music sales (such as CDs) have been declining in recent years, in East Asia (particularly Japan and South Korea), however, physical music sales have been rising consistently.
The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry credits this phenomenon to "K-Pop fans who want high-quality physical formats and deluxe box sets".
Several controversies have arrived based on the way the industry has been treating its artists.
It is not uncommon for record labels to prohibit their pop artists from dating for a certain period of time or for as long as they have a contract with the company. In Japan managers may attempt to discourage their artists from dating or engaging in behavior that may tarnish their images by keeping a busy schedule and only letting artists know about their schedules a day at a time. Artists who break this contract, as in the case of Minami Minegishi from AKB48, run the risk of getting dropped from their music group or contract.
Korea has similar rules for musical pop artists. Artists have more freedom to date and get married, however managers have strong control over their personal lives and behaviors. In Taiwan, artists are also expected to behave in certain ways, as they cannot discuss taboo topics such as politics.
The following table lists the total revenues of the music markets of East Asia:
|Rank||Country||Revenue in 2014
(in million USD)
...It's also the first country where digital surpassed physical sales.
According to IFPI, global physical format sales declined from 61% in 2011 to an estimated 58% in 2012. However, in Japan, CD and DVD sales posted strong increases (sales numbers or percentages were not provided). While in South Korea physical sales are expected to rise for the third consecutive year, with IFPI crediting K-Pop fans who want high-quality physical formats and deluxe box sets, with driving the format's sustained popularity.