Culture: EU Countries

Department for Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 3rd May 2023.

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Photo of Jeff Smith Jeff Smith Shadow Minister (Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what steps she is taking to support cultural organisations to build and maintain relationships with European partners following the UK’s exit from the European Union.

Photo of Julia Lopez Julia Lopez Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office), The Minister of State, Department for Culture, Media and Sport, Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)

The Department is taking a number of steps to deepen the longstanding relationships with our European partners — and, indeed, with countries in other continents across the globe — for instance by supporting the British Council’s Seasons of Culture, via bilateral agreements with other Governments, and through our membership of multilateral fora such as the Council of Europe and UNESCO. Ministers also undertake regular international visits and hold virtual meetings to champion British arts and cultural organisations, and engage in regular dialogue with counterparts from key partner countries.

To give a recent example, in March 2023 the Department supported the UK-France Summit. The communiqué from this acknowledged our deep cultural connections and shared interests and agreed to develop people-to-people initiatives including encouraging mobility, culture, and exchanges, within the framework of the EU-UK relationship.

The Department also funds Arts Council England to support the sector to forge direct and deeper links at an institution-to-institution level. We agreed an objective with Arts Council England to ‘Help the Cultural Sector to Work Internationally’. This is included in its 2021–24 Delivery Plan and covered in accountability meetings.

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