Eighty cultural organisations have joined together to put pressure on the EU to double the funding it provides to support their industries.
The European Parliament is due to vote on its spending preferences for the EU’s next budget on 14 November. The cultural organisations asked MEPs to vote in line with the preferences of the Parliament’s Budget Committee and increase the funding for the EU’s Creative Europe programme from €1.4 billion in 2014-20 to €2.8bn in 2021-27.
“Culture and creativity are among Europe’s strongest assets. Their contribution to the social, economic and artistic development of Europe fully justifies the added value of EU investment in culture,” the organisations said. They included the Architects’ Council of Europe, the European Broadcasting Union and the European Writers’ Council.
The MEP leading the Parliament’s work on the plans for the Creative Europe programme, Silvia Costa, said in her draft report on it that the programme is “seriously underfunded”, and that this prevents many organisations from applying.
Even if the Parliament does vote as the organisations have requested, however, the extra money is far from guaranteed. The European Commission has proposed that the Creative Europe programme should have a 2021-27 budget of just €1.6bn, and both it and national governments are likely to resist any call from the Parliament for a large increase.
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Words: Craig Nicholson
Photo: Derek Gleeson