Tomorrow, on May the 19th, the EU Ministers of Culture and Audiovisual will meet digitally to discuss the impact of Covid19 on the Cultural and Creative Sectors. Following up on the first video-exchange cultural ministers had in April, this meeting will focus on further steps that need to be taken in the transition period, including coordination among member states on policy measures and opening of the sector at the EU level, taking into consideration the significance of a harmonized EU approach.
Ministers of Culture and Audiovisual will not discuss post crisis funding for culture tomorrow. The European Commission is expected to unveil its new Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) and Recovery Initiative (RI) proposal on the 27th of May. President von der Leyen has already presented the skeleton of the Recovery Initiative to the Members of the European Parliament at the plenary meeting on May 13. It will be “short-term and concentrated on the first years of recovery,” she said. The money would be raised by the Commission borrowing on capitals markets, and all funding would be channeled through EU budget programs and thus subject to parliamentary oversight. Commission President also said the recovery plan should serve the EU’s strategic priorities through the climate and digital agendas.
The cultural sector – especially independent artists and small and medium size cultural organisations – have been severely hit by the crisis, fact that von der Leyen acknowledged in her speech at the plenary too. The cultural and creative sectors and European cultural networks have been vocal in highlighting the effects of the crisis on the sector, calling for embracing cultural concerns in the collective response to the crisis.
Culture Action Europe continues to #actforculture advocating for a substantial and sustainable support for culture in a recovery budget for the future of Europe. We call on the European Institutions and the Member States to recognise culture as an integral part of the economic, social and environmental recovery plan for Europe within the Recovery Initiative making at least 7% of recovery funds accessible and tailored to the specific needs of the cultural sectors. We reiterate our call to put culture at the centre of the (revised) MFF by doubling the budget for Creative Europe and ensuring at least 1% of the whole long-term budget across policy fields and MFF programmes is earmarked for culture.
More ambitious Creative Europe program with increased budget (#double4culture), mainstreaming of culture across policy fields and MFF programmes as well as inclusion of cultural sector in the recovery initiative has been main topics of discussion during one-to-one meetings Culture Action Europe held with the Vice-President Margaritis Schinas and the Commissioner Gabriel’s cabinet. We are also in constant exchange with different members of the CULT Committee of the European Parliament, who are putting pressure on the Commission to save the vibrant European cultural scene.