Highlight the value of cultural heritage as a strategic resource for growth and job creation and the role it can play for more cohesive and sustainable regions in the EU;
Elevate the cultural policy on the political agenda in the context of the debate on the future of Europe and the MFF negotiations, with the aim of increasing (e.g. doubling) the budget allocated to the next Creative Europe framework programme;
Promote and support the design and use of cultural development strategies at local and regional level, part of the larger integrated approach to cultural heritage for Europe;
Support a stronger territorial dimension in the next European Agenda for Culture and insist that culture and cultural heritage become better integrated in the EU priorities for the next Multiannual Financial Framework.
On 22 May 2018 the European Commission published the Communication on a New European Agenda for Culture, COM(2018) 267 final. The aim of this blueprint is to use the full potential of culture in building a more inclusive and fairer Union, supporting innovation, creativity, sustainable jobs and growth and in reinforcing the external relations of the EU. Cities and regions are considered "natural partners" in the New Agenda and they make the focus of the three specific eco-systems, together with education and training and the cultural and creative industries.
At its meeting on 22-23 May 2018, the Council of the EU adopted conclusions on "Bringing cultural heritage to the fore across policies in the EU" (8544/18). In para. 21 of these Conclusions, the Council invites the Member States, in due compliance with the principle of subsidiarity to "recognise the role of cultural heritage in relevant national sectoral programmes co-financed by the EU with a view to preserving the value and importance of cultural heritage for local people and future generations and fully develop the potential of heritage as a resource for economic development, social cohesion and cultural identity" (ideas advocated for in para. 29 and 40of the CoR Opinion). The Council also acknowledges in para. 6 that "Cultural heritage in all its diversity and forms – tangible and intangible, immovable and movable, digital and digitised - is a value in its own right, an inheritance from our past and a strategic resource for the sustainable future of Europe, helping to respond to social, economic and environmental challenges at different levels - from local, national and regional to European and even global".
On 30 May 2018 the European Commission published the Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing the Creative Europe programme (2021 to 2027) and repealing Regulation (EU) No 1295/2013, COM (2018) 366 final. A number of elements respond to issues raised in CoR Opinion on Cultural Heritage as a strategic resource for more cohesive and sustainable regions in the EU, namely:
bigger budget: EUR 1.85 billion representing a 26.7% increase, but still under EUR 2 bn. target advocated for in the CoR Opinion;
mobility of artists: Result-oriented cross-border mobility for culture and creative operators (page. 6);
be better incorporated into the next MFF through mainstreaming: complementarity and synergies should be sought with funding programmes supporting policy areas with close links to each other as well as with horizontal policies such as Union competition policy (Preamble, 25);
boosting funding of the Guarantee Facility and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) covered: Financial instruments providing guarantee and where needed equity type support to SMEs in the cultural and creative sectors (page 11).
The CoR rapporteur-general was invited as a speaker to the Conference on "Cultural heritage: for a more sustainable Europe" (Plovdiv, 26-27 March 2918) organised by the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU together with DG EAC from the European Commission. Mrs Babette Winter, participated in the Opening Session together with Mr Boil Banov, Minister of Culture of the Republic of Bulgaria, Commissioner Tibor Navracsics and MEP Mircea Diaconu.
The CoR substantially contributed to the European Cultural Heritage Summit organised in Berlin on 18-23 June 2018, under the motto “Sharing Heritage – Sharing Values”. The aim of the summit was to engage and mobilise a wide range of stakeholders, public and private, for an ambitious European Cultural Heritage Agenda. The CoR President, Mr Lambertz was a panellist in the European Policy Debate, together with Monika Grütters, Minister of State and Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media, Germany; Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport; Luca Jahier, President of the European Economic and Social Committee; Françoise Nyssen, Minister of Culture, France; and Luís Filipe de Castro Mendes, Minister of Culture, Portugal. The CoR rapporteur-general Babette Winter also participated in the summit to the "Heritage Excellence Fair". Furthermore in the framework of the Knowledge Exchange Platform she was a speaker at the "Adaptive Reuse of Built Heritage" workshop, organised by DG EAC.
THE EUROPEAN COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS
- notes that cultural heritage in its diverse forms is a major asset for Europe: it is a resource with the potential to become a key lever for more cohesive and sustainable regions in the EU that can help strengthen identity in a region as well as in Europe as a whole, and particularly embodies the EU's motto of "United in diversity";
- highlights the fact that digitalisation – both of cultural heritage and of the means of disseminating it – presents immense potential for the future: it can create new forms of access, particularly for young people, and can also disseminate knowledge about cultural diversity across borders, throughout Europe;
- stresses that the creative engagement of artists with the cultural heritage has a special and innovative potential in terms of learning from history to benefit society's future;
- calls on regions who see their cultural heritage as a particularly strong asset to also take this on board in their RIS3 strategy;
- is concerned to note that the European Commission's capping of the ERDF investment budget for cultural infrastructure at EUR 5 million in the current programming period of the Structural Funds and the Cohesion Fund is an obstacle to the development of larger cultural infrastructure projects;
- therefore calls on the European Commission to rescind this arbitrary ceiling and to base the programmes on substantive criteria and the goals to be achieved, especially European added value;
- insists that culture and cultural heritage be better incorporated into the priorities of the next MFF both through mainstreaming and setting a budgetary target of over EUR 2 bn. for the programme succeeding "Creative Europe";
- stresses that local and regional authorities have important competences when it comes to promoting intercultural dialogue, in particular through their coordination of multi-dimensional local and regional cultural networks involving all the key stakeholders.