Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Questions (21)

Pearse Doherty


10 Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht the initiatives he plans to bring forward to rectify the fact that Ireland is at the bottom of the EU culture programme league tables as highlighted in a recent report by Euclid International; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [35426/12]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht)

The Culture Programme is the EU support programme for organisations working in the field of culture. There are Cultural Contact Points in each of the participating countries of the EU Culture Programme. Their role is to provide information, advice and technical assistance to anyone in the country interested in applying to the EU for funding under the Culture Programme 2007-2013. The CCP in Ireland is based at the Arts Council.

Since 2007, Irish cultural organisations have been involved in 33 EU projects that have received grants in excess of €15.6m from the Culture Programme. The Irish take of these grants is estimated to be in the region of €3.3m.Recent statistics show that Ireland's participation is improving and organisations are now more likely to look to Europe for funding. Overall, the picture is optimistic for Irish application levels to gain a critical mass in the near future, judging by the increased level of interest in the past three years.

An examination of the report by Euclid International does not support the claim that Ireland is bottom of the EU Culture Programme league table. Ireland's percentage take from the Programme is broadly in line with our population size and, by the report's own admission, there are a number of difficulties in providing any definitive analysis.