Brussels, 19 June 2014
Serbia first non-EU country to sign Creative Europe agreement
Serbia is the first non-European Union country to sign up and participate in the new Creative Europe programme. Minister for Culture and Information Ivan Tasovac will sign an agreement in Brussels today (14:00) with European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth Androulla Vassiliou for the country to join the scheme, which provides grants for transnational cooperation projects involving organisations in the cultural and creative sectors. The European Commission envisages similar agreements in the near future with Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Turkey, Georgia and Moldova, while preparatory talks with several other countries are ongoing.
"I am delighted that we are signing this agreement which will enable Serbia to benefit from Creative Europe. It is a country with numerous art museums, professional theatres, renowned music festivals and a literary tradition going back to the 11th century. With its vibrant culture and distinctive Roman and early Byzantine architectural heritage, part of it on the UNESCO world heritage list, Serbia enriches our common European cultural space," said Commissioner Vassiliou.
With a budget of nearly €1.5 billion over the next seven years - 9% more than previous levels - Creative Europe will enable up to 250 000 European artists and cultural professionals, and thousands of creative organisations and publishers, to work together and make their creative works available to millions of citizens.
Today's agreement means that Serbian organisations will be able to benefit from funding under the Culture sub-programme of Creative Europe. They will, for example, be able to apply for grants for multiannual cooperation projects, for book translations, for setting up cultural networks or establishing multinational cultural platforms. Serbia is also expected to join Creative Europe's MEDIA sub-programme after bringing its audiovisual legislation in line with EU law.
Serbian cultural organisations benefitted extensively from the previous Culture Programme (2007-2014). In total, they received around €1.2 million in grants as project leader for some 40 projects selected for EU funding. Dozens more Serbian organisations also benefitted from the programme as co-organisers of projects. In 2011, Serbian author Jelena Lengold was awarded the EU Prize for Literature for the country.
For more information
European Commission: Creative Europe
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