Last update: April 19th
Last update: April 19th
Measures announced by the Ministry of Culture and Sports to strengthen the contemporary culture affected by the effects of the health crisis
On April 2nd, the Ministry of Culture and Sports announced a EUR 15 million support plan to stimulate and enhance the resilience of contemporary culture, creators and professionals. From this amount, EUR 5 million came from the 2020 Ministry’s budget, while the extra EUR 10 million came from the Ministry of Economy. Those measures come in parallel to horizontal measures announced by the government, which is some cases also touch on the cultural and creative sectors.
For the first phase of the Ministry’s Development Measures and New Initiatives Plan, the following has been foreseen:
Furthermore, when it comes to cultural venues, the Ministry announced the following measures:
In the field of books, the Ministry announced the following:
The Ministry announced that it would proceed structural changes so that contemporary Greek culture, artists and creative professionals can be further supported.
Further measures announced that directly address artists and creatives are the following:
The Ministry – in cooperation with the Ministry of Digital Transformation – is working towards putting online a lot of digital content on a specialized Culture Platform that will connect citizens with cultural activities in Greece and abroad, and will promote the activities of cultural organisations supervised by the Ministry and museums and archeological sites.
Finally, another important step announced by the Ministry is the design and implementation of a research among professionals of the cultural and creative field in Greece for measuring the impact of the crisis in the sector. The research will start in May 2020 and the results will be announced at the end of 2020. The aim is that these results will feed into evidence-based policies of the Ministry in the near future.
In parallel, many artistic professions and cultural professionals fall under the measures announced by the Greek government as a response to the crisis. Entrepreneurs in the field of creative and cultural industries, as well as freelancers have access – depending on their situation – to a support of EUR 800 for the month of April as compensation of lost activity or to a training voucher worth EUR 600. Horizontal measures regarding professionals are revised constantly as the situation evolves.
Further relief measures have been put into place regarding social security and VAT obligations for enterprises and free lancers. Nevertheless, there has been protests from the professional communities that not all artistic related professions have been taken into consideration in the measures (for example, there were quite some concerns raised by technical support staff of live performance and freelancers that are not represented by any professional association).
The artistic and cultural professionals community is also actively organising itself to advocate for further, comprehensive and longer-term support to the sector. For example by adhering to international initiatives promoted by organisations such as IETM, with the request that substantial support is guaranteed to the sector through the foreseen Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative grant.
– The Greek National Opera, a cultural organisation supervised by the Ministry of Culture, announced the donation of 20.000 free performance tickets to doctors and nurses of the National Health System;
– The Onassis Foundation launched ENTER, a new initiative that has commissioned new works to artists across generations and arts field. Onassis Stegi and Onassis USA have commissioned artists across the globe to prepare new works in 120 hours. The thought behind it is that we need to include and understand the present, to learn from it, and at the same time create a digital capsule which will perserve the memory of this period for future generations.
– The new Artistic Director of the Athens & Epidaurus Festival announced the programme for 2020 in a video, hoping that it will be realized as soon as circumstances allow it.