Industry Report: European Policy
Creative Europe: the new programme is at the final stage of its negotiation
by Sara Petti
- Creative Europe, the new framework-programme 2014-2020, is at the final stage of its negotiation. It will bring together the media and the cultural sector, thus maximising the potential synergies, cross-fertilization and the exchange of good practices.
With a final budget of 1,462 billion euros – almost ¼ lower than the one proposed by the European Commission in the beginning because of the cuts on the next multiannual financial framework 2014-2020, Creative Europe will bring together the current programmes Culture 2007, MEDIA 2007 and MEDIA Mundus, plus the European Capitals of Culture and the European labels for heritage. It also provides a new financial guarantee facility to diversify and make easier the project funding.
When Creative Europe was proposed, in November 2011, the Commission had identified five major problems, the same for the entire cultural and audio-visual sector, that had to be addressed by the new framework-programme: the digital shift, the impact of globalisation, the market segmentation along the cultural borders, the lack of data and the difficult access to finance. Through its amendments of January 2013, the parliamentary commission in charge of the programme (Commission CULT, chaired by Silvia Costa, S&D deputy) has brought out a fifth challenge: audience development.
The main focus is enhanced competitiveness, to be achieved by the strengthening of the financial capability of the sector – especially of SME and micro-enterprises, and new business models experimentation. The transnational circulation of works and operators is also strongly supported, with special measures such as quotas for the distribution of non-national films in cinema networks and on other platforms, or an increased transnational cooperation.
The programme is divided in three strands/sub-programmes:
The cross-sectoral strand gets 13% of the total budget. It includes the new financial guarantee facility, functioning like i2i for audiovisual but on a larger scale, transnational cooperation and funding of both the European Audiovisual Observatory and the Creative Europe desks (resulting from the merger of Culture Desks and MEDIA Desks).
The Culture programme will have 31% of the budget. The main targets are reinforcement of the sector’s capacity and support of transnational cooperation and mobility. The measures are prioritised on non-profit actors.
The MEDIA programme gets 56% of the budget. The media sector now includes video games, and the programmes targets also short films, documentaries and animated films thanks to the parliamentary amendments. Compared to the current Media programme, Creative Europe stresses more on digitalisation and it introduces some new objectives: audience building through promotion and media literacy, and support for new distribution modes, such as VoD. Like the Culture programme, the targets are reinforcement of the sector’s capacity and support of transnational distribution. The current MEDIA logo will be kept.
Creative Europe has been made to be consistent and complementary with other European programmes, such as the Structural Funds or Horizon 2020 for research and innovation. It has been created in the light of the UNESCO Convention on diversity of culture expression, and it is to be inserted in the larger framework of the Europe 2020 strategy for a smart, intelligent and inclusive growth.
The negotiations are still going on and are characterised by a trialogue between Commission, Parliament and Council - an innovation brought by the Lisbon Treaty. Currently the programme awaits for the Parliament first reading, and should be voted and eventually approved in November during the plenary session.
Click here to read the interview with Xavier Troussard, MEDIA’s new head of Unit at the European Commission.