Creative Europe Programme 2021-2027
Investing in our culture is investing in our future
Open letter to EU leaders from Europe’s cultural and creative sectors

Brussels, 21st November 2019

Dear President of the European Council, Dear Member States representatives,

We are writing as a group of 90 organisations from across Europe’s cultural and creative sectors ahead of the European Council discussions on the future EU budget.

At this key juncture of the negotiations on a future EU Multi-Financial Framework (2021-2027), we call on you to support the European Parliament’s proposed budget for the Creative Europe Programme 2021-2027(1), the only EU framework Programme dedicated to cultural and creative sectors.

Today, Creative Europe represents a mere 0,15% of the overall EU Budget. This is by no means proportionate to our sectors’ contribution to the EU economy, which stands at €509bn in value added to GDP and over 12 million full-time jobs (7.5% of the EU’s work force)(2).

Our culture and our talents support artistic freedom and media pluralism, which are crucial for maintaining open, inclusive and creative societies. Yet, culture is low on the EU’s political agenda, and these sectors remain structurally underfinanced. The financing gap for Europe’s cultural and creative SMEs alone is estimated to be somewhere between €8bn and €13bn(3).

This is why we welcome the European Parliament’s proposal to increase the Creative Europe budget to €2.8bn. We call on the Council to support this much-needed boost to the future of Europe’s arts, culture and heritage, and the values they promote.

The contribution of Europe’s cultural and creative sectors to the social, economic and artistic development of Europe fully justifies the added value of EU investment in culture.

Our common values and our unique cultural diversity lie at the center of our collective European project and are the best ambassadors for the EU’s global influence in the world.

Investing in our culture is investing in our future. Let’s show a high level of ambition and shape a brighter future for Europe.

(1) Proposal for a regulation establishing the Creative Europe programme (2021 to 2027) and repealing Regulation (EU) No 1295/2013 (COM(2018) 366 final)
(2) European Parliament report on a coherent EU policy for cultural and creative industries (2016/2072(INI))
(3) European Commission Impact assessment accompanying the Proposal for a Regulation establishing the InvestEU Programme. SWD(2018) 314 final


The undersigned organisations

  1. AEC – Association Européenne des Conservatoires, Académies de Musique et Musikhochschulen
  3. AER – Association of European Radios
  5. b.creative – the global network for cultural & creative entrepreneurs
  6. CEM – Centre Européen de Musique
  8. CEPIC – Centre of the Picture Industry
  9. CICAE – Confédération Internationale des Cinémas d’Art et d’Essai
  10. CAE – Culture Action Europe
  11. CEATL – European Literary Translators
  12. CILECT – International Association of film and television schools
  13. Circostrada Network
  14. Cumulus
  15. EAA – European Association of Archaeologists
  16. EAS – European Association for Music in Schools
  17. EBU – European Broadcasting Union
  18. ECCD – European Coalition for Cultural Diversity
  19. E.C.C.O. – European Confederation of Conservator-Restorers’ Organisations
  20. ECF – European Cultural Foundation
  21. ECSA – European Composer & Songwriter Alliance
  22. EDN – European Dance Network 
  23. EFA – European Festivals Association
  24. EFAITH – European Federation of Associations of Industrial and Technical Heritage
  26. EGDF – European Games Developer Federation
  27. EIFB – European and International Booksellers Federation
  28. ELIA – European League of Institutes of the Arts
  29. EMA – European Museum Academy
  30. EMC – European Music Council
  31. EMCY – European Union of Music Competitions for Youth
  32. EMEE – European Music Exporters Exchange
  33. EMMA – European Music Managers Alliance
  34. EMU – European Music School Union
  35. ENCATC – European Network on cultural management and policy
  36. ENCC – European Network of Cultural Centres
  37. ERIH – European Route of Industrial Heritage
  38. ETC – European Theatre Convention
  39. European Choral Association – Europa Cantat
  40. Eurocinema
  41. Europa Cinemas
  42. Europa Distribution, The European Network of Independent Film Publishers and Distributors
  43. Europa International
  44. European Jazz Network
  45. Europa Nostra
  46. Europavox
  47. European Heritage Alliance 3.3
  48. European Mozart Ways
  49. EUYO – European Union Youth Orchestra
  50. Eurozine – European Network of Cultural Journals
  51. ESNS
  52. EWC – European Writers’ Council
  53. FEDEC – European Federation of Professional Circus Schools
  54. FEP – Federation of European Publishers
  55. FERA – Federation of European Film Directors
  56. FIA – International Federation of Actors
  57. FIAD – International Federation of Film Distributors’ Associations
  58. FIAPF – International Federation of Film Producers Association
  59. FIM – International Federation of Musicians
  60. FSE – The Federation of Screenwriters in Europe
  61. GESAC – European Grouping of Societies of Authors and Composers
  62. gigmit
  63. IAMIC – International Association of Music Information Centres
  64. IAO – International Artist Organisation of Music
  65. ICMP – International Confederation of Music Publishers
  66. ICOMOS – the International Council on Monuments and Sites
  67. IETM – International Network for Contemporary Performing Arts
  68. IFPI – International Federation of the Phonographic Industry
  69. IMPALA – Independent Music Companies Association
  70. IMPF – Independent Music Publishers International Forum
  71. IMMF – International music managers forum
  72. IMZ International Music + Media Centre
  73. INES – Innovation Network of European Showcase Festivals
  74. IN SITU – European Platform for Artistic Creation in Public Space
  75. Interpret Europe
  76. ISFE – The Interactive Software Federation Europe
  77. IVF – International Video Federation
  78. JM International
  79. Live DMA – European Network for Live Music Associations
  80. Liveurope – The Live Music Platform for New European Talent
  81. Mad’in Europe
  82. MCA – Michael Culture Association
  83. NEMO – Network of European Museum Organisations
  84. On the Move
  85. Pearle*- Live Performance Europe
  86. REMA – European Early Music Network
  87. SAA -Society of Audiovisual Authors
  88. SEE Network – South East European Network
  89. SHAPE platform
  90. Sistema Europe
  91. TEH – Trans Europe Halles
  92. UNIC – International Union of Cinemas
  93. UNIMEI – UNI – Media, Entertainment & Arts

IMPALA – Independent Music Companies Association

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