The European Parliament calls for Creative Europe to be strengthened
by Thierry Leclercq
- During preparations of the mid-term evaluation, the Parliament recommends the strengthening of and adjustments to the European cultural programme
When it met in plenary on 2 March in Brussels, the European Parliament endorsed an increase in the budget for the Creative Europe programme, "to make sure it meets the expectations of European citizens and the ambitions of each of its sub-programmes". MEPs also declared themselves in favour of greater consistency and transparency, and a reduction in bureaucracy.
"Today, the Creative Europe programme is a victim of its own success," deplored Italian MEP Silvia Costa, who initiated the resolution voted on in plenary. The lack of budgetary resources means there are very low selection rates (16% for cultural projects, 32% for MEDIA projects); this generates a lot of frustration in European creators and operators. "We need to demonstrate a higher degree of transparency when projects are rejected, and rigorously justify our decisions for doing so, so as not to compromise the reputation of the programme with confused justifications", she said to MEPs. The latter are also making the case for "a greater balance between artistic and creative considerations and those relating to management and innovation" when it comes to evaluating projects.
Moreover, MEPs are calling for less cumbersome bureaucratic procedures, for example by expanding on the mechanisms for flat-rate subsidies, by facilitating access for small projects to funding and shortening payment windows. In the MEDIA sector, they are supporting a modification of the automatic points system "to guarantee true equality in competitive conditions" between projects, bolstering of support for the development of projects, for dubbing/sub-titling and cinema networks. The system of support for video games should also be modified to better fit with the specificities of the sector.
In the medium term, the resolution recommends keeping the programme up and running until 2028, "by covering all cultural and creative sectors", and developing co-productions "including in cooperation with pioneering institutions in the sector, like Eurimages".
Deemed "positive and constructive", these recommendations were welcomed by European Commissioner Carlos Moedas (Research and Innovation): "They will be taken into account with the utmost care in the mid-term evaluation," expected at the end of the year. With regard to the budgetary constraints, "we expect to increase the budgets between now and 2020", he assured.
(Translated from French)