Europe’s tradition wants rebound after large pandemic hit | Arts & Leisure

BRUSSELS (AP) – Cultural institutions in the European Union lost up to four-fifths of revenue and visitor numbers when the COVID-19 pandemic devastated the continent and now need all the financial support they can get to restore their prestige, said the block on Tuesday.

The latest EU figures show that museums in popular tourist regions have lost up to 80% of their income in the past year. Movie theaters saw box office sales decrease by 70%, while attendance at music concerts and festivals decreased by 76%, resulting in a 64% decrease in sales.

“Everyone has lost here and we have to revive the sector,” said EU Commission Vice-President Margaritis Schinas.

And from summer music festivals that attract tens of thousands to small museums that display historical gems on a tight budget, everyone has been hurt. Cultural considerations aside, such institutions are often the driving force behind the European tourism industry on which so many of the 27 Member States depend for income and employment.

And with the bloc recovering from the worst recession in history, Schinas insisted that the culture should not be left behind.

β€œIt’s part of our European DNA,” said Schinas. “In order for Europe to regain its status as a global cultural power, the industry needs coordinated, tailor-made efforts across Europe so that it can reopen safely but also sustainably.”

He said it was key that member states give arts and culture plenty of room in their applications for reconstruction funds from the EU if the bloc can go to the open market for grants and loans to ensure nations get away from the economic Setback can recover.

Typically, tourist-dependent countries like Italy and Spain invest direct investments to promote museums. In total, the pandemic-specific recovery funds amount to around 675 billion euros that can be tapped.

“It is imperative that our member states make an effort to include these sectors as important elements for recovery in the national reconstruction and resistance funds,” said Schinas.

He insisted that the EU itself increased support to the sector by € 4.5 billion over the next six years.

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