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Musicians: Reciprocal Arrangements

Question for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

UIN HL5359, tabled on 8 June 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the statement by Baroness Barran on 3 June (HL Deb, col 1360), why they believe that a reciprocal two-year EU-wide multi-entry touring visa for musicians and others is not legally possible.

Answered on

22 June 2020

In my response to The Earl of Clancarty in Parliament on 3 June, I said that a touring visa as he proposed was not “legally possible”.

I am afraid that this could have been phrased more accurately. While a visa of the kind he proposed is not legally impossible, the legal arrangements of the EU make it less negotiable, and each individual EU member state retains the right to caveat the third-party mobility arrangements negotiated at an EU-wide level. We are not asking for a special, bespoke, or unique deal. We are looking for a deal like the free trade agreements the EU has previously struck with other friendly countries such as Canada.

We recognise that music and the performing arts are culturally and economically crucial industries. Through negotiations with the EU on Mobility and Mode IV we are exploring how we can provide greater certainty to these industries in the future through reciprocal provisions based on best precedent.