New programme aims to ensure a better structure for Europe's creative industry

According to Marietje Schaake cultural diversity is 'integral' to Europe's 'global competitiveness'.

By Marietje Schaake

25 Feb 2014

Everywhere in Europe, on the EU level, the national level and in the municipalities and provinces, we are confronted with the need to reduce spending and to reform our government's finances. In many countries the cultural sector is targeted first, because cultural activities are seen as an 'extra', a 'luxury'.

But Europe's cultural diversity is an integral part of our global competitiveness. Our diverse cultural and creative sectors not only foster innovation and ingenuity but they also create an attractive climate for business to settle. They help attract audiences and tourism from all over the world.

Additionally, anything from dance, to gaming, from design to fashion are exported from the EU to countries all over the world, while the benefits of the cultural economy trickle down into many other sectors such as the digital economy, ICT and high-tech.

In addition to a more efficient structure and improved access to private funding, the new creative Europe programme will drive the European cultural and creative sectors by increasing the available budget for culture between 2014 and 2020. [pullquote]It is understandable that in times of crisis economic arguments rise to the surface, but I am sure these investments in the cultural and creative sectors will pay themselves back to the last cent[/pullquote].

Perhaps not always in an economic sense, but also by stimulating art and culture as an essential part of our open societies. It is not always possible to put a price tag on that.

The new programme focuses on the development of the cultural scene, to make them more professional, to give them more outreach to the international arena and especially to support the creative industries.

The sub-programme on Media aims at better supporting the dissemination and promotion of European films. Better financial support shall be given to cultural projects, and creative industries by the guarantee scheme.

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