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Malta/ 3.4 International cultural co-operation  

3.4.6 Other relevant issues

Cultural collaboration with countries like Britain, France, Germany and Italy has centred on projects such as the screening of art-house films, art and photographic exhibitions and music concerts. Some of the most stable events on Malta's mainstream cultural calendar arrive from Italy, Germany, France and the United Kingdom. In the recent past, Maltese activity in France, Germany and Italy has included exhibitions, literary events and artistic productions.

It is estimated that there are approximately 350 000 citizens of direct Maltese descent (Maltese Diaspora) living in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and other European countries. First and second generation emigrants have been actively concerned about preserving Maltese culture overseas. There is also Maltese language classes organised regularly in Australia and elsewhere, while Maltese programmes feature regularly on Ethnic Radio in Australia. The Maltese Broadcasting Service also sends regular news bulletins in Maltese to emigrants, but unfortunately, a rather "parochial" protectionist culture prevailing within the Maltese Diaspora has been alienating younger generations of Maltese lineage. The problem is often noticed when Maltese people visit their distant families in the host countries.

On an official visit to Australia in 2007, the Maltese Prime Minister promised the government’s commitment to address the cultural needs of the Diaspora community in Australia. This will mainly be created through increased cultural links with Malta and further investment in pedagogical tools for Maltese language courses. The establishment of the Council of Maltese Abroad is an important step to foster long-term programmes and formalise a stronger relationship with the Maltese Diaspora (see chapter 3.4.1).

In 2014, The Valletta 2018 Foundation launched a series of annual international conferences addressing different aspects related to cultural relations in Europe and the Mediterranean. Particular importance will be given to matters related to the common histories and geo-political realities of Europe and the Mediterranean within the spheres of international relations and cultural diplomacy. The First Annual Valletta 2018 International Conference on Cultural Relations in Europe and the Mediterranean addressed aspects of contemporary cultural relations in the Mediterranean in the framework of Valletta as European Capital of Culture.

Chapter published: 12-08-2015

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