Commissioner Navracsics supports European Year Of Cultural Heritage

The Committee on Culture and Education of the European Parliament (CULT) held a rich two-day meeting on 19-20 January 2015 which concentrated closely on culture. Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, presented his three priorities: the new investment plan for Europe; the review of the Europe 2020 strategy; and the Digital Single Market. Answering to questions from the Members of CULT, he also enthusiastically supported the idea of having a European Year of Cultural Heritage to “reinforce our colourful heritage” and celebrate our “common roots of EU identity” as he put it himself.

Tibor Navracsics at his hearing in the European Parliament on 1 October 2014. Photo: Sean Kelly CC BY-SA 2.0

Tibor Navracsics at his hearing in the European Parliament on 1 October 2014. Photo: Sean Kelly CC BY-SA 2.0

Members of the CULT Committee also discussed the ideas put forward by Mircea Diaconu regarding his report on the European Commission Communication ‘An integrated approach to cultural heritage for Europe’, which is expected for March 2015. He focused particularly on funding issues, exchange of best practices, participatory governance including local communities, the European Year of Cultural Heritage, technological research on cultural heritage and digitisation, the economic potential of cultural heritage and illicit trafficking of heritage.

To close the meeting, Michel Magnier, European Commission DG EAC Director “Culture and Creativity”, presented the state of play of the implementation of the Creative Europe programme. Through a very structured presentation, he described the political, operational and administrative management framework of the programme. He also enumerated the elements of the 2014 implementation which will need improving (especially the clarity of guidelines in the call for proposals, the role and work methods of experts, the role of desks, better transparency regarding the results of the projects selected and better balance between bigger and smaller cooperation projects). Regarding 2015, he recalled the organisation of the European Culture Forum and informed the Members that negotiations concerning the financial guarantee instrument will also start this year. He also announced the European Commission will start the mid-term review of the Creative Europe programme in 2016 so that the co-legislators can work on it in 2017.

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