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Parliamentary questions
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22 December 2014
Question for written answer E-011196-14
to the Commission
Rule 130
Fernando Maura Barandiarán (ALDE) , José Blanco López (S&D) , Javier Nart (ALDE) , Clara Eugenia Aguilera García (S&D) , Yana Toom (ALDE) , Mircea Diaconu (ALDE) , Ilhan Kyuchyuk (ALDE) , Juan Carlos Girauta Vidal (ALDE) , Giorgos Grammatikakis (S&D) , Iratxe García Pérez (S&D) , Krystyna Łybacka (S&D) , Pablo Iglesias (GUE/NGL) , Beatriz Becerra Basterrechea (ALDE) , Eider Gardiazabal Rubial (S&D) , Sergio Gutiérrez Prieto (S&D) , Inmaculada Rodríguez-Piñero Fernández (S&D) , Ramón Jáuregui Atondo (S&D) , Jonás Fernández (S&D) , Enrique Guerrero Salom (S&D) , Isabella Adinolfi (EFDD) , Tania González Peñas (GUE/NGL) , Emmanouil Glezos (GUE/NGL) , Helga Trüpel (Verts/ALE) , Javi López (S&D) , Luigi Morgano (S&D) , Javier Couso Permuy (GUE/NGL) , Enrique Calvet Chambon (ALDE) , Soledad Cabezón Ruiz (S&D) , Juan Fernando López Aguilar (S&D) , Bogdan Andrzej Zdrojewski (PPE) , Liliana Rodrigues (S&D) , Marina Albiol Guzmán (GUE/NGL) , Maite Pagazaurtundúa Ruiz (ALDE) , Ernest Urtasun (Verts/ALE) , Jean-Marie Cavada (ALDE) , Curzio Maltese (GUE/NGL) , Inés Ayala Sender (S&D)

 Subject:  Financial cuts to culture in Europe
 Answer in writing 

Since 2009, as a consequence of the financial crisis and owing to the policy of austerity, funding to museums, theatres and cultural institutions has been drastically reduced. Italy, Greece, France and the UK are among the countries that have been most severely affected, even though heritage and cultural life are major drivers in attracting capital from international tourism and creative entrepreneurship. Spain is also in a critical position, with two years of budget cuts to the country’s cultural institutions, an increase in VAT for sales of art and a lack of policies to secure protection for intellectual property, libraries and cinema resulting in serious protests across the country. As a means of dissenting and criticising the bills enacted by the Spanish Minister for Culture, José Ignacio Wert, well known artists are rejecting national cultural awards to protest the government’s policies on culture.

While economic studies have demonstrated in recent years that cultural and creative industries boost growth and business development — as reflected by the recent launch of the Creative Europe programme — the place of culture in public policies is becoming dangerously weak.

On the basis of the principle of subsidiarity, what concrete measures is the Commission planning to take in order to positively influence Member States’ policies on culture?

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