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Parliamentary questions
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9 July 2021
Answer given by Executive Vice-President Vestager
on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-002672/2021

The Commission fully agrees on the importance of enabling a sustainable recovery of the EU economy, including for sectors hardest hit, such as culture. The Commission adopted the state aid Temporary Framework to enable Member States to use the full flexibility foreseen under EU State aid rules to support the economy, including the audiovisual sector. The Temporary Framework is currently set to expire by the end of December 2021. The Commission will continue to monitor its application and the implementation of COVID-19 related state aid measures, with a review to progressively phasing out crisis support measures when the situation allows, while avoiding cliff-edge effects. There are also other possibilities for Member States to support the audiovisual sector. For example, the Commission has approved aid measures for the audiovisual sector designed to respond to the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic under the Cinema communication(1).

Concerning best practices for the audiovisual sector under safe conditions, the Commission issued on 29 June 2021 EU guidelines on the safe resumption of cultural activities and the sustainable recovery of the sector, as a follow-up to its communication ‘Coronavirus: a common path to Europe’s safe re-opening’(2) of 17 March 2021. These guidelines aim to ease Member States’ choices regarding the reopening of the cultural and creative sectors and industries and include recommendations for actions to support the recovery, resilience, and sustainability of cultural activities. The guidelines build on best practices gathered from cultural and creative stakeholders over the last months. The Commission encourages Member States to utilise the variety of available measures to support this process.

(1)See Decision C(2021)2866 final of 22.04.2021, State Aid SA.62007(2021/N) & SA.62008 (2021/N) — Italy
Internal Tax Credit for the production of cinematographic and audiovisual works — modifications, which approves i.a. the possibility to grant the tax credit in case of irreversible interruption of the
filming operations and absolute impossibility of their completion due to COVID-19; Decision C(2021)1705 final of 10.03.2021, Aide d’État SA.59435 (2021/N) et SA.59437 (2021/N) — France Aides financières automatiques à la production et à la préparation d’œuvres cinématographiques et Aides financières automatiques à la production d’œuvres audiovisuelles du genre fiction et documentaire de création — modification temporaire, which approves an increase of the aid intensity for works that face financial difficulties due to the COVID-19 pandemic; Decision C(2020)6821 final of 2.10.2020, State Aid SA.58206 (2020/N) — Film and TV Production Restart Scheme, which approves an aid scheme aiming to support the restart of film and television production which was failing due to the lack of availability of sufficient insurance to cover risks associated with COVID-19.
(2)EUR-Lex — 52021DC0129 — EN — EUR-Lex (europa.eu)
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