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Musicians: Economic Situation

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 21st May 2020.

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Photo of Hilary Benn Hilary Benn Chair, Committee on the Future Relationship with the European Union, Chair, Committee on the Future Relationship with the European Union

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the potential economic effect on UK musicians of leaving the transitional period without an agreement with the EU.

Photo of John Whittingdale John Whittingdale Minister of State

The UK’s creative industries deliver around 12 per cent of the UK’s total exports in services, and have grown rapidly in recent years. The government is committed to ensuring this growth continues.

DCMS has engaged extensively with union bodies, artists and cultural organisations to help understand the needs of the creative and cultural sector, including UK musicians who make up a significant proportion of people in these sectors. We understand the diverse circumstances of companies, organisations and individual practitioners and how they may need to adapt as we leave the EU.

We want a relationship with the EU based on friendly cooperation, centred on free trade on the lines of the free trade agreement the EU has with Canada. On temporary entry for business purposes (mode 4), a reciprocal agreement based on best precedent will mean that UK citizens will be able to undertake some paid business activities in the EU without a work permit, on a short-term basis. The precise details, including range of activities, documentation needed, and the time limit, will be negotiated. We are confident that such an agreement based on friendly cooperation can be achieved. However, in the event that such a comprehensive free trade agreement cannot be agreed, the transition period will end and the UK will operate under the deal agreed with the EU in 2019 and an arrangement similar to that between Australia and the EU.

In all circumstances, we expect UK musicians’ work to continue to be an export that is highly valued in the EU as it is across the world.

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