6.3 Trends and indicators for private cultural financing
Currently there are no reference research sources with precise figures on which fields of culture are financed and the amounts of sponsorship for culture carried out by businesses, private companies, foundations, agencies and individual donors. Culture is not listed among the priority investment and financing programmes of donor organisations that work in the Republic of Moldova, while the majority of foreign private companies have not formulated any communication strategies that would reflect their interest in culture. Public-private partnerships, like the culture of corporate social responsibility are at the incipient stage in the Republic of Moldova. Partnerships and relationships between business and the cultural sector are weakly developed, while the legal framework and tax benefits are not sufficiently incentive for serious investment in this sector. However, a small number of private companies and institutions have constantly supported and invested in developing the cultural sector.
One eloquent example is the Soros Foundation-Moldova (SFM), which over the last five years invested 401 109 USD in supporting and developing cultural projects in the Republic of Moldova. The Budget of SFM for the programme of cultural policy in 2013 was 21 329 USD, for project TRIO - Hub for Rural Cultural Development 2011-2013. The project ran from November 2011 to December 2013 with the financial support of the European Cultural Foundation, the Open Society Foundation and Soros Foundation-Moldova (FSM). The goal was to create models for the reorganisation of houses of culture in centres that provide cultural services for the population on the basis of partnership and cooperation between cultural institutions, organisations representing the civic sector and public administration institutions. The TRIO project Moldova marked the end of a long-term programme on consolidation of development capacities in the cultural sector in the Republic of Moldova, implemented by the European Cultural Foundation in 2007. A successful project of the Soros Foundation-Moldova in 2012 was TANDEM project, implemented in partnership with the European Cultural Foundation (Amsterdam), MitOst (Berlin), European Cultural Action (Brussels) and the Centre for Cultural Management (Lviv). The project activities were implemented with the financial support of the European Commission and the Robert Bosch Stiftung Foundation. The organisers intended to provide a breeding ground for cultural cooperation with the European Union countries, also to combat stereotypes that exist on both sides of the border, and facilitate implementation of artistic cooperation projects. Likewise, professionals from the cultural field from the European Union countries and from the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine had the opportunity to create new networks and collaborative partnerships. The budget for the programme of cultural policy of SFM in 2012 amounted to a total of 119 334 USD.
In 2013 "Edelweiss" Foundation supported and promoted talented persons from the Republic of Moldova through sponsorship of six cultural projects that reached 29 501 direct beneficiaries, with a budget of 306 088.4 MDL. A successful project entitled "Classical Music for All" was launched, which gathered 24 000 spectators eager to listen classical music performed by 65 young musicians from Chisinau Youth Orchestra. Cultural events dedicated to children from socially vulnerable families, disadvantaged children or those with disabilities, were also supported in partnership with the Cultural Society "Vatra". Likewise, the IV-th edition of the National Festival "Carols, Carols" was organised. Three spectacular concerts were held during the Festival, which brought together 11 choirs from across the country, symphonic orchestras and guests from abroad.
Among the private companies that have an active involvement in sponsoring cultural events are two mobile operators - Orange and Moldcell. These two companies, with clearly defined policies of civic responsibility are in most cases general sponsors of important cultural events.
The Orange Company through the Orange Foundation is involved in sponsoring cultural events, organised outdoor, dedicated to young people, or in inviting world-renowned performers, such as Goran Bregovic, Cesaria Evora, Thomas Anders, etc.
In turn, Moldcell Comps has an action programme entitled "Ambassador of Culture", which includes events such as the "Ethno Jazz Festival", the International Festival of Theatre Art "BITEI", the International Festival "Queen Violin" and many other important cultural events.
Of course there are many other small private enterprises like travel agencies or publishing houses that offer funds in different spheres of culture, but their agreement with organisers is of a barter nature and confidential. Unfortunately, the figures are not made public.
For now, these contributions may only be observed on promotion materials and during various launch events.
An alternative for financing the cultural sector and particularly the non-governmental organisations may be provided by adoption of the 2% Law, by which NGOs in the Republic of Moldova could be partially funded by taxpayers. A solution successfully implemented in several European countries is creation of a National Cultural Fund, with the budget being provided from different sources, such as: excise duty of 1% on the import of beer and alcohol products; excise duty of 1% on the import of tobacco products; conducting a cultural lottery; income collected from concerts (performances) organised specially by the cultural institutions, donations from individuals and businesses and other means not contrary to the legislation.
Chapter published: 11-03-2015