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Creative Europe programme 2021-2027: General Information


The EU aims to offer increased support for European artists and creators, and so contribute to the further development of European culture and identity.

The Creative Europe programme plays an important role in promoting European art, culture and media.

Specific objectives of Creative Europe include:

  • enhancing artistic and cultural cooperation, including the mobility of artists and professionals, at EU level

  • promoting the cooperation, competitiveness and innovation potential of the European audiovisual industry

  • supporting the creation, circulation and promotion of European works

  • promoting a diverse and pluralistic media environment

  • promoting media literacy

  • Proposal for a regulation establishing the Creative Europe programme (2021 to 2027) and repealing regulation (EU) No 1295/2013, 11 June 2018

The programme includes:

  • support for the translation and promotion of literary works across the EU

  • the development of audio-visual works, including video games

  • the production of innovative TV content, European and international co-productions

  • support to international sales and circulation of non-national European works on all platforms

Creative Europe also supports:

  • architecture and heritage protection projects

  • European cinema festivals and the music sector

  • European Capitals of Culture: highlights the richness and diversity of cultures in Europe

  • the EU Prize for Literature: recognises the best emerging authors in Europe

  • European Heritage Label: awarded to sites which have contributed to the progress of EU history and unity

Why do we need it?

Culture has a positive role to play in reinforcing the resilience of European society and the economy. The cultural and creative sectors fully contribute to the EU's economic development, generating jobs and growth. Due to digitalisation and global competition, stronger support is needed for the European cultural and creative sectors. Europe's cultural and linguistic diversity is part of its richness and it calls for appropriate solutions and strategies to be put in place for European works to circulate across borders. To maintain Europe's cultural and linguistic diversity more should be done to:

  • stimulate the transnational creation and circulation of European works

  • ensure that European works are more widely distributed

  • support the mobility of cultural and creative professionals

By reinforcing culture and creativity in the EU, we can better support media freedom and pluralism. The Commission proposes the new Creative Europe programme as part of the 'Investing in people' chapter of the EU's long-term budget proposal.

In detail

The Commission's proposal to reinforce the EU's cultural and creative sectors is focused on three areas:


The culture strand covers the cultural and creative sectors, and includes these elements in order to:

  • strengthen transnational creation and circulation of works

  • reinforce the mobility of professionals via networks, platforms and cooperation projects

  • reinforce support to the specific sectors of music, books and architecture

  • better promotion of the European cultural content across borders in Europe and beyond


The media strand covers the audiovisual sector, and includes the following core elements:

  • further supporting the development, production, promotion, and dissemination of European works within Europe and beyond

  • enhancing audience-building, including via new business models and new technologies

  • developing and promoting innovative content, video games, serial storytelling

  • setting up a network of European video-on-demand operators

  • setting up a network of European festivals

  • creating an online directory of European films

  • reinforced investment in training audiovisual professionals in order to make them 'digitally fit'

Across cultural and media sectors

The cross-sectoral strand covers activities across all cultural and creative sectors including these elements to:

  • support transnational networking, exchange of experiences and know-how for culture operators

  • promote new forms of cultural creation, experimental approaches and the use of innovative technologies

  • promote a free, diverse and pluralistic media environment and support qualitative journalism and media literacy

In the Council

The current Creative Europe programme runs from 2014 to 2020. The Commission presented the proposal for the new period in May 2018. The Cultural Affairs Committee and Audiovisual Working Party examined the proposal.

Member states have welcomed the Commission's approach to maintaining the general structure of the current programme and expressed their support for the ambitious budget.

Discussions focused on the following points:

  • definitions, in particular 'seal of excellence'

  • programme structure and objectives

  • budget distribution, agreeing to insert it in percentages

  • third countries associated to the programme, requesting clear cooperation conditions

  • implementation, emphasising the role of national programme desks

  • gender equality as regards criteria and indicators of the programme

  • eligible entities such as the European Youth Orchestra and European Film Academy included

  • monitoring assessment and control

  • Audiovisual Working Party (background information)

  • The Cultural Affairs Committee (background information)

The Council agreed its position (partial general approach) on the regulation establishing the Creative Europe programme for 2021-2027.

The position of the Council represents its mandate for the negotiations with the European Parliament which will begin next year. The decision on the financial allocations for Creative Europe for 2021-2027 will depend on the agreement on the next MFF.

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