Commission launches public consultation on future of cultural and creative industries

The European Commission has launched an online public consultation yesterday aimed at unlocking the full potential of Europe’s cultural and creative industries. The consultation is linked to a new Green Paper which highlights the need to improve access to finance, especially for small businesses, as key to enabling the sector to flourish and to contribute to sustainable and inclusive growth.

According to Androulla Vassiliou, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, Europe’s cultural and creative industries are not only essential for cultural diversity in our continent; they are also one of our most dynamic economic sectors. They have an important role to play in helping to bring Europe out of the crisis.

Mr Dundas welcomes the launch of the European Commission’s Green Paper as it highlights the central role played by the creative and artistic sectors in driving European economic growth.

The sector, which includes performing arts, visual arts, cultural heritage, film, television and radio, music, publishing, video games, new media, architecture, design, fashion design and advertising, provides quality jobs for 5 million people in the EU.

It contributes 2.6% to European GDP – which is more than many manufacturing industries achieve. The cultural and creative industries are also growing faster than most parts of the economy.

Digitization and globalization are opening new market opportunities, in particular for small businesses. But these businesses very often face obstacles to fulfilling their full potential. The public consultation will encourage stakeholders and others to consider questions like:

·How can we facilitate access to funding for small and micro enterprises whose only asset is their creativity?

·How can the EU help to secure the right mix of creative and managerial skills in these sectors?

·How can we foster more innovation and experimentation, including wider use of information and communication technologies?

Cultural and creative industries also contribute to the competitiveness and social cohesion of our cities and regions. European Capitals of Culture such as Lille, Liverpool and others show that investing in this sector creates jobs and helps transform the image of cities. While they develop firstly at local and regional levels, cultural and creative industries are potentially global in their reach, contributing to a European presence worldwide. Support in their local and regional environment can help provide them with a launch pad to achieve global success.

Cultural and creative industries can also have beneficial spill-over effects on a wide range of other businesses and society at large. Designers, for example, have gradually become an essential part of the management team of many big companies.

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