Fruitful discussion with European Commission’s Vice-President Schinas on support to culture and heritage within EU’s priorities

On 25 June, Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović, Secretary General of Europa Nostra, and Jimmy Jamar, Head of Europa Nostra Brussels Office, met with Margaritis Schinas, Vice-President of the European Commission responsible for the Promotion of the European Way of Life, at the Commission’s headquarters in Brussels. The meeting, which took place at the end of the current Commission’s term, was an occasion to take stock of the evolution of the Commission’s achievements, in due collaboration with the civil society, in the areas of culture and heritage, following a similar meeting that took place at the beginning of the Vice-President’s mandate.

The highlights of the latter included the role of culture during the COVID period and the successful bid put forward by the Cultural Deal for Europe to devote 2% of the Recovery Plans to culture and heritage; the growing links evidenced between cultural heritage and the urgency to combat climate change; the revival of the importance of international cultural relations, following the wars in Ukraine and the Middle East; as well as the successful bid by Europa Nostra following the launch of the European Parliament’s pilot entitled the European Heritage Hub.

All in all, the meeting stressed the growing importance of culture and heritage among the European Union’s priorities, which was further emphasised during the campaign leading to the European elections in June 2024. The elections were an occasion to stress the strong links between culture and heritage on the one hand, and the debate around European values, and particularly democracy, on the other.

The participants agreed on the need to further enhance the importance of culture and heritage among the priorities of the new Commission, as a means to build bridges between Europeans, and to emphasise the importance of their multi-layered identities.

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