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Theatre: EU Countries

Question for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

UIN 3150, tabled on 18 May 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, what recent assessment he has made of the potential effect of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement with the EU on the ability of theatre productions that originate in the UK to undertake a continuous multinational tour in Europe.

Answered on

25 May 2021

This Government recognises the importance of our world leading creative and cultural industries, including theatre. Touring is a vital part of performers’ careers, providing not only a vital income stream, but also enriching opportunities for cultural exchange across the world. Being outside the European Union does not change this. It does, however, mean practical changes on both sides of the Channel that will require understanding and adaptation.

UK performers and artists are of course still able to tour and perform in the EU, and vice versa. However, we understand the concerns about the new arrangements and we are committed to supporting the sectors as they get to grips with the changes to systems and processes.

As the Prime Minister has said, we're working flat out with the industry, including through the DCMS-led working group, on plans to support the creative sectors tour in Europe. Through our bilateral discussions with EU Member States, we have established that in at least 17 out of 27 Member States some touring activities are possible without visas or work-permits.

In recognition of the value of the cultural and creative industries - including theatre - at Budget 2021 this government announced an additional £300 million of support in England through the Culture Recovery Fund. This extra funding means that our total support package for culture during the pandemic is now approaching £2 billion. These are unprecedented sums.