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IP/11/237

Brussels, 1 March 2011

Commissioner Piebalgs announces new support for culture in the African, Caribbean and Pacific countries on the occasion of the Ouagadougou Film Festival

To coincide with the Pan-African Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou (FESPACO), the European Commission is launching the EU-ACP support programme for the ACP cultural sector totalling €30 million. The new programme will ensure that the achievements of the current film and cultural support programmes have a lasting legacy. These programmes have, for instance, made possible the Chad film "Un homme qui crie" by Mahamat-Saleh Haroun, Prix du Jury at the Cannes Film Festival in 2010, and "The last flight of the flamingo" by the Mozambique director, João Ribeiro, which won the award for best feature film at the 3rd International Film Festival of Luanda (Angola).

"The dynamism of African cinema, Caribbean music and Pacific artists opens a window onto the reality in these countries. Culture is a vital element in social cohesion and identity. It is also a sector which generates wealth and jobs. My wish is that our support for the cultural sector will contribute to the economic, social and also political development of the ACP countries", said the Development Commissioner, Andris Piebalgs.

This new programme provides support to every link in the production chain: from creation/production to distribution/dissemination/promotion, including the development of vocational training courses.

The first call for proposals for the programme will make it possible to finance schemes to the tune of €12 million, €7 million of which will be in the film/audiovisual domain and €5 million for other cultural industries, with a view to:

  • boosting the creation/production of cultural goods and services in the ACP countries by promoting their integration into distribution channels and by drawing even more benefit from the interregional ACP framework;

  • promoting their access to markets at different levels – local, regional, intra-ACP, European and international;

  • enhancing the technical and entrepreneurial capacities of the different players, operators and entrepreneurs involved in the cultural sector in the ACP countries.

By requiring a distribution strategy for productions in each production plan and by allowing state television companies to submit bids for distribution, the emphasis is on the circulation/dissemination of productions and the economic and social dimensions of the cultural sector (market access, job creation and integration of activities into the formal economy).

The new programme continues the activities carried out under the ACPFILMS and ACPCULTURES programmes financed by the 9th European Development Fund, still under way. It takes on board the lessons learnt and recommendations made during consultations held in recent years with artists' representatives and professionals and entrepreneurs from the cultural sector in ACP countries. A second call for proposals is scheduled for mid-2012.

Pan-African Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou

The European Commission is supporting the organisation of FESPACO with funding of €1.74 million for the 2011 festival. It also provided a grant of €70 000 for the first African Television Day held on 27 February. This event made it possible for seven private African French-speaking television channels to offer the same 100% African schedule of programmes, a veritable panorama of African productions, potentially reaching some 100 million viewers in Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Congo Brazzaville, Niger and Senegal.

Background:

The new programme is financed by the 10th European Development Fund.

Under the ACPFILMS programme, the Commission, in partnership with the ACP Group of States, is financing 24 projects in the fields of production and post-production (12 projects), distribution, promotion and networking (6 projects), and training (6 projects), amounting to a total of €6.5 million. This programme has made it possible, for instance, to produce the Chad film "Un homme qui crie" by Mahamat-Saleh Haroun, Prix du Jury at the Cannes Film Festival in 2010, and "The last flight of the flamingo" by the Mozambique director, João Ribeiro, which won the award for best feature film at the 3rd International Film Festival of Luanda (Angola).

ACPCULTURES focuses on the other artistic sectors. A total of €2.17 million is earmarked for the setting-up of six projects relating to the contemporary visual arts, the performing arts and music, in particular for the organisation of artistic events, technical training courses, professional encounters and exchanges, and artist-in-residence schemes.

For more information:

http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/what/culture/index_en.htm

http://www.acpfilms.eu/

http://www.acpcultures.eu/

http://www.fespaco.bf/


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