EU Funds for the Cultural and Creative Sectors

Article written by Kurt Cortis, Executive EU Funding, Servizzi Ewropej f’Malta
Published in The Malta Independent – 05.07.2021

With a budget of €2.44 billion, the Creative Europe Programme will seek to support Europe’s cultural and creative sectors for the period 2021–2027.

The Creative Europe programme brings together actions supporting the European cultural, creative, audiovisual and film sectors. Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit Europe in spring 2020, these sectors have been among the most negatively affected. Particularly, the venue/visitor-based sub-sectors such as the performing arts and heritage were most severely hit.

Furthermore, the crisis has highlighted the vulnerability of many workers in the field, such as artists, freelancers or temporary workers. In this regard, the programme seeks to contribute to the recovery of these sectors, by facilitating their digitalisation, by promoting the transition to the green economy and by making such sectors more resilient and more inclusive.

The Creative Europe programme has two main aims: to safeguard, develop and promote European cultural and linguistic diversity and heritage, and; to support the economic potential and increase competitiveness of the cultural and creative sectors, in particular the audiovisual sector.

The programme is split into three sub-programmes:  the Culture strand; the Media strand and the Cross-Sectoral strand.

The Culture strand supports cultural cooperation projects, the creation of networks of professional organisations, as well as promoting European artists and works.

The Media strand caters for the audio-visual and film sectors by encouraging collaboration and innovation when creating high-quality works, strengthening Europe’s industry vis-à-vis global competitors by promoting business innovation and competitiveness, strengthening accessibility and visibility of works for their potential audiences, as well as supporting policy discussion, studies and reports.

Lastly, the Cross-Sectoral strand supports the cultural and creative sectors’ common challenges and opportunities, by promoting transnational policy cooperation, the creation of innovation labs and supporting media literacy, quality journalism and pluralism.

The new 2021-2027 programme builds on the success of the past by increasing its investment, broadening its reach and facilitating its access. In fact, the €2.44 billion budget represents a 50% increase from the previous programme. Moreover, the new programme also supports the news media sector for the first time, by promoting media literacy, pluralism and media freedom. In a bid to facilitate access to the programme, co-finance rates for projects will also be higher than in previous years.

The Creative Europe programme is open to a myriad of cultural and creative organisations from EU Member States and from other acceding countries, candidate countries and potential candidates amongst others.

The programme encourages audio-visual, cultural and creative players to operate transnationally, across Europe, to reach new audiences and new digital literacy skills.

The first calls for proposals under this programme were issued in June 2021, with funding opportunities for cooperation projects, European networks and pan-European cultural organisations.

Amongst its various Eu-related services, Servizzi Ewropej f’Malta (SEM) assists local organisations such as government entities, local councils and non-governmental organisations to gain access to EU-funding opportunities, through personalised assistance on the practical aspects related to EU Funding, such as project development and writing. Once a project is selected for funding, SEM can also assist local entities to implement their project.

For more information on the Creative Europe programme or any other matter related to the EU, kindly contact SEM on info.sem@gov.mt or 2200 3300.

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