French government announces a €432 million recovery plan for performing arts

Akiyo concert, Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe, Memorial ACTe, November 25, 2018

Highly impacted by the health crisis, private and public companies in the cultural sector, authors and artists in the French Caribbean islands – Guadeloupe, Martinique, St. Martin, St. Barthélemy – as well as French Guiana on the South American continent will also receive financial assistance from the Government.

Ti-Jean & la Parade des diables 51
Play “Ti-Jean & la Parade des diables”, Memorial ACTe, october 20, 2018

French Prime Minister, Jean Castex, opened this major meeting which took place in the presence of the Minister of Culture, Roselyne Bachelot, and organizations representing performing arts in France, on Thursday, August 27 in Paris with these words: “By coming to meet you today at the Ministry of Culture, I wanted to concretize the government’s solidarity and support for the performing arts sector. I would like to express my gratitude to the Minister of Culture and her administration, who are at your side during this crisis. €432 million will be allocated to the sector to support companies and institutions in the private and public sectors, authors and artists. The effort made had to be massive, commensurate with the size of the difficulties you are facing, commensurate with the size of the economic and social importance of the performing arts sector in France”.

A package of decisions has therefore been announced, as follows:

  • an extension of the partial activity until December 31, 2020;
  • an extension of the performing arts tax credit and the phonographic tax credit until December 31, 2024 and a temporary relaxation of the performing arts tax credit parameters;
  • the development of a new compensation mechanism to encourage the resumption of activity by venue operators. This mechanism will be set up after consultation with professionals in the sector, effective as of September 1, 2020 and until December 31, 2020. A provision of €100 million will make it possible to finance this mechanism from September 2020 for the entire cultural sector; this will be in addition to the €2 billion global recovery plan.

The €432 million announced this Thursday by the Government comes from the €2 billion that will be allocated to the entire cultural field to deal with the consequences of the Covid-19 epidemic and will be distributed as follows:

  • €220 million for private performing arts
  • €200 million for subsidized performing arts
  • €12 million for employment and artists authors of performing arts, to which is added an exceptional programme of €30 million for artistic commissioning.

The Government noted that emergency measures had been taken from the start of the crisis by the State, its operators and partners. It intends to continue its support for the cultural world by putting in place “a response of unprecedented scale aimed at companies, authors, artists, institutions, from the private sector as well as the public sector”, according to the press release. “The State will ensure that these measures benefit all actors,” it said.

The Government presented its three current priorities:

the resumption of activity by adapting existing health measures. Thus, regarding theatres, physical distancing will be cancelled for dancers, musicians, actors, singers, or any other profession required to perform on a stage, provided that strict health protocols are followed. In addition, the authorities are planning “a new mechanism to compensate for operating losses linked to the persistence of distancing measures” from September 1 and for a period of four months, which will be reserved for VSE/SME venue operators in the private sector. €100 million for the entire cultural sector will be added to the €2 billion recovery plan.

support for private companies, artists-authors and public institutions or those subsidized by a major recovery plan for culture. Of the €432 million allocated to performing arts, €220 million will go to private performing arts. €200 million will go to music (producers, authors, broadcasters), €10 million will go to the Centre National de la Musique, which is reponsible for managing these funds, and the remaining €10 million will go to theatre.

The subsidized performing arts will receive €200 million to help the different actors: €120 million (national public operators); €30 million (regional performing arts institutions working in theatre, dance, street arts and circus); €30 million (orchestras and festivals); €20 million (ecological transition of regional creative institutions).

In addition, the remaining €12 million will support creation and employment.

The Government’s objective is to restore confidence and encourage the return of the public to the cultural venues.

Bèlè, traditional music and dance in Martinique