Výbor Evropského parlamentu navrhuje inovace v kulturní politice
Výbor pro kulturu a vzdělání Evropského parlamentu jednohlasně přijal 15. března 2011 nelegislativní zprávy, které požadují posílit vnější kulturní politiku EU, kulturní diplomacii, zvýšit podporu kulturním a tvůrčím odvětvím a zkvalitnit ranné vzdělávání a péči. Členové a členky Evropského parlamentu doporučují zavést kulturní EU visa pro umělce a další profesionály v kulturní oblasti, podobně jako již existující víza pro vědce. Výbor zdůrazňuje, že Kultura může a má usnadňovat inkluzi, inovaci, demokracii, lidská práva, vzdělávání, předcházet konfliktům a dosahovat usmíření, vzájemnému porozumnění a kreativitě. Výbor dále přijal jednohlasně zprávu Uvolnění potenciálu kulturních a tvůrřích odvětví, doporučil posílit vytvoření jednotného vnitřního trhu pro on-line kulturní a kreativní obsahy a dosáhnout toho, že zákony ochrání duševní práva a nebudou vytvářet nesmyslné či diskriminační překážky, které by znemožňovali lidem s handikepem v přístupů ke kulturním statkům.
EP Committee proposes innovations in cultural policies and early child education
On Thursday the European Parliament's Committee on Culture and Education adopted non-legislative reports that call for strengthening the EU's external cultural policy, increasing support for cultural and creative industries, and improving early childhood education and care. They are likely to be submitted to plenary vote in May.
In the report on the cultural dimensions of the EU’s external actions by Marietje Schaake (ALDE, NL), adopted by 26 votes in favour, none against nor abstentions, the Committee underlines the importance of cultural diplomacy and cultural cooperation with non-EU countries.
Stronger cultural diplomacy to facilitate democracy and freedom
Concerned by the fragmentation of external EU cultural policy, MEPs call for a new directorate for cultural and digital diplomacy within the External Action Service and for the appointment of an EU ambassador-at-large, and also for the designation of one person in each EU representation overseas responsible for cultural relations and the promotion of European culture. They also call for the creation of a cultural EU visa for artists and other professionals in the cultural field, similar to the existing scientific visa.
"Culture can and should be a facilitator for development, inclusion, innovation, democracy, human rights, education, conflict prevention and reconciliation, mutual understanding and creativity", stresses the Committee. Similarly, "democratic and fundamental freedoms, including "the privilege to connect and communicate - online and offline", are preconditions for cultural expression, cultural exchanges and cultural diversity. MEPs condemn censoring and monitoring of the internet by repressive regimes, support the free and open Internet and call for global promotion of Internet freedom. They also object to the use of cultural arguments to justify human rights violations.
More support and recognition for cultural industries
The report on unlocking the potential of cultural and creative industries, presented by Marie-Thérèse Sanchez-Schmid (EPP, FR), was adopted by 26 votes in favour, none against and two abstentions. The Committee suggests fostering the establishment of a European internal market for on-line cultural and creative content and guaranteeing access to it whilst ensuring copyright and proper compensations. MEPs propose a European licensing system, as well as extended collective licensing systems and one-stop-shop systems for the clearance of rights. They also call for tackling abusive commercial practices and violations of intellectual property rights, yet "ensuring that laws protecting intellectual property rights do not constitute an unreasonable or discriminatory barrier to access by people with disabilities to cultural materials".
MEPs also suggest introducing more bank guarantee measures for better access to credit, repayable advances, venture-capital funds and incentives for patronage and public-private partnerships in the field, such as tax relief. They also call on the Commission to provide financial support for entrepreneurial projects and start-ups in the sector proposed by young people under 35. At the same time the Committee underlines the need to recognise professional qualifications as well as to fight against pay discrimination in this sector.
MEPs support initiatives aimed at improving and promoting translation, dubbing, subtitling, surtitling and digitalisation of European cultural works. They suggest establishing a specific budget line to support the changeover to digital in European cinemas. They also call for "establishing a European digital single market" and urgently removing the obstacles relating to VAT rules and the lack of accessible payment methods for online sales.
Improving early childhood education and care
Finally, the report on early years learning in the EU by Mary Honeyball (S&D, UK) was adopted by 27 votes, with none against nor abstentions. The Committee "calls for the development of a European framework for early childhood education and care services (ECEC) that respects Member States' cultural diversity and highlights shared goals and values". "While disadvantaged social groups may benefit from additional help, provision of ECEC should ideally be universal to all parents and children regardless of their background or financial status", MEPs stress.
The Committee recommends that Member States introduce a compulsory nursery school year before the start of schooling. It also calls on Member States to recognise professional qualifications for those working in ECEC and increase the numbers of men working in the sector. Further, MEPs encourage Member States to ensure that all qualified ECEC staff are ideally paid a salary in line with that of primary school teachers. "ECEC services should be fully participative, involving all staff, parents and, where possible, children themselves", stresses the Committee. At the same time it encourages Member States to provide home visiting services for parents who need additional help, as well as free access to advisory services in crèches.
In the chair: Doris PACK (EPP, DE)
Contact: Robertas POGORELIS
European Parliament Press Service
Tel. +32 228 32006
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