Two-year Brexit halt to pan-EU arts, says report

Writer:

Paul Genty

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The separation of the UK from the EU could put arts cooperation back dramatically

It could take two years before UK arts organisations are able to collaborate fully, post-Brexit, with European companies, a University of Manchester study claims.

Loss of funding and changes in regulations will cause many problems for international companies and could undermine years of work.

Uncertainty over the combined effects of Covid-19 and Brexit – in terms of increased cross-border bureaucracy, insurance and visa organisation – could make collaboration simply too difficult to organise.

Report author Charlotte Faucher said: “Some institutions haven’t made plans with European artists because they can’t afford the planning – especially if they then to have to change it according to whatever legislation might come along.”

Medium-sized companies are likely to be hardest hit because they are most likely to be involved in international cooperation and will be worst-hit by policy changes. Large companies often receive official help for prestige touring, and small companies can't afford pan-EU work.

The UK’s involvement in EU funding schemes is likely to stop completely in the New Year – the government has said it won’t be asking to continue as a non-EU partner. This means UK companies will miss out on £40 million a year offered by the EU to arts organisations. The report believes arts groups will be forced to rely on possibly “precarious” local funds, often from local councils with more basic needs to fulfil.

Among the report’s recommendations is a need for clarity about future national funding schemes, a favourable visa regime so artists can move freely between the UK and EU countries, and the need for extra support to help British organisations to continue to foster cross-channel partnerships.

Read the full report here

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