Thursday

18th Jan 2018

Focus

EU countries ponder massive increase in arts spending

  • Dalwood: 'Isn't it going to favour obvious visible targets like classical music, the performing arts and public art?' (Photo: European Commission)

The European Commission's plan to launch the world's largest ever cultural funding programme is to be tested in coming weeks as EU states ponder if they want arts spending to go up 37 percent in the next EU budget.

The 'Creative Europe' proposal, published in late November, would see €1.8 billion from the EU budget allocated for visual and performing arts, film, music, literature and architecture in the 2014-2020 cycle. Brussels estimates that up to 300,000 artists would receive funding if EU countries approve the scheme.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

The proposed increase comes at a time when governments across the EU are cutting national arts budgets in a bid to reduce deficits.

The size of the increase may also prove controversial at a time when EU governments are divided on whether to agree to any real rise in the EU budget.

In an explanatory paper sent to government ministers and MEPs, the commission pointed to economic research showing that the cultural and creative sector contributes 4.5 percent to the EU economy and employs 3.8 percent of Europe's workforce.

The proposal received a mixed response from cultural commentators who welcomed the promise of additional funding but said the focus should not be purely on its economic payback.

Dexter Dalwood, a nominee for the Turner Prize in 2010, told The Art Newspaper: "If the goal is to create social cohesion, isn't it going to favour obvious visible targets like classical music, the performing arts and public art?"

He doubted whether the funding structure would see money "trickle down to the most needy creative people."

The commission detailed plans to provide funding of €910 million from 2014 onward for the film industry.

Elsewhere, the European Capitals of Culture programme is to get €490 million, with Guimaraes in Portugal and Maribor in Slovenia to be capitals of culture for 2012.

The EU paper also looks at ways to overhaul funding for the cultural business sector.

In a move to shift funding away from conventional government grants towards private investment and loans, it outlines plans to ease access to financial backing for small businesses.

Noting that "cultural sector SMEs [small-and-medium-sized enterprises] have an estimated €2.8 billion to €4.8 billion shortfall" in funding, the commission called for a new financial guarantee facility enabling them to access up to €1 billion in bank loans.

The Creative Europe proposal will be scrutinised by national governments and the European Parliament as part of overall deal-making on the next EU budget.

Meanwhile, Culture Action Europe, the pan-EU lobby group on arts spending, has said its 'We Are More' campaign - which calls for more EU culture spending - has collected 22,000 signatures.

The group hopes to reach 100,000 when it presents its campaign manifesto to EU culture ministers in May.

Riga says it can handle expense of being EU Capital of Culture

Despite slashed budgets and economic woes, Latvia's capital Riga is confident of being able to raise the necessary funding for a series of cultural events in 2014, when it is due to become the European capital of culture, its mayor told this website.

Pressure mounts on EU cloud deal as deadline looms

The European Commission is under pressure to keep to its self-imposed September deadline to publish an EU cloud computing strategy, as new evidence revealed widespread public confusion about it.

Hungary to tax NGOs that 'help' migration

Ahead of elections in April, Hungary's government swings into campaign mode by proposing a new set of rules to stop illegal migration and NGOs that assist in it.

Commission and council dig in on GMO opt-outs

The European Commission and the EU's national governments pass each other the buck on who should move first on a heavily-criticised proposal on the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in food.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Solutions for Sustainable Cities: New Grants Awarded for Branding Projects
  2. Mission of China to the EUTrade Between China, Belt and Road Countries up 15%
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersOresund Inspires Other EU Border Regions to Work Together to Generate Growth
  4. Mission of China to the EUTrade Between China, Belt and Road Countries up 15%
  5. AJC Transatlantic InstituteAJC Calls on EU to Sanction Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, Expel Ambassadors
  6. Dialogue PlatformRoundtable on "Political Islam, Civil Islam and The West" 31 January
  7. ILGA EuropeFreedom of Movement and Same-Sex Couples in Romania – Case Update!
  8. EU2017EEEstonia Completes First EU Presidency, Introduced New Topics to the Agenda
  9. Bio-Based IndustriesLeading the Transition Towards a Post-Petroleum Society
  10. ACCAWelcomes the Start of the New Bulgarian Presidency
  11. Mission of China to the EUPremier Li and President Tusk Stress Importance of Ties at ASEM Summit
  12. EU2017EEVAT on Electronic Commerce: New Rules Adopted

Latest News

  1. Next year's EU election at risk of Russian meddling
  2. Hungary to tax NGOs that 'help' migration
  3. Cyprus, Malta, and Russia gang up on whistleblower
  4. 'No backsliding' on Brexit promise, Irish PM warns
  5. Commission and council dig in on GMO opt-outs
  6. Ombudsman asks ECB chief to quit secret bankers group
  7. Polish Nazi-jibe MEP 'spams' EU inboxes
  8. Macron eyes France-UK border agreement