Music Moves Europe

EU initiative for dialogue with the music sector


Music Moves Europe (MME) is the overarching framework for the European Commission's initiatives and actions in support of the European music sector.

Beyond the possibility to support platforms, networks and cooperation projects through the Creative Europe programme (2014-2020), the Commission, as a result of a dialogue with key music stakeholders to identify the main challenges facing the sector, is now implementing a Preparatory Action to develop and test different initiatives tailor-made to the specific needs of the music ecosystem.


Music is one of the most popular forms of art, widely consumed, and a vibrant expression of Europe's cultural diversity. It also contributes significantly to Europe's economy. The music sector generates revenues of over €25 billion per year and employs more people than the film industry.

Technological change has brought about radical shifts in the music field and the music industry is busy exploring new business opportunities. Digitization and the online distribution have altered revenue streams, reshaped business models and led to new consumption patterns. This created new challenges both within the sector and for consumers.

While music is being consumed more than ever, artists and producers claim that they do not receive fair remuneration for the online exploitation of their work. European content, especially from smaller countries, struggles for visibility on big streaming platforms compared to that of American and British artists.


Music Moves Europe aims to help the music sector flourish, to adapt to new challenges and to reap the benefits of digitization. Through MME the Commission wants to build on and strengthen further the sector's strong assets: creativity, diversity and competitiveness.

Its specific objectives are to:

  • promote creativity and innovation
  • safeguard and expand the diversity of European music
  • help the sector adapt to and benefit from digitization.

The Commission will also strengthen the dialogue with the sector so as to explore further the developing needs and identify possible fields of EU action (policy action and targeted funding for music post-2020) with a clear added value.



In order to better understand the specific challenges and development needs of the music sector, the Commission started a dialogue with the representatives of the sector in late 2015 to identify the main challenges facing the sector. The outcomes of this dialogue was summarised in the AB Music Working Group report in 2016. The report revealed the need to support music creation, promote musical diversity and to explore the opportunities offered by music online and offline distribution more effectively. Radical shift in business model due to digitalisation, the prevalence of national frameworks for business operation which hinders international circulation of artists and repertoires, and the difficulties to get access to music at its true European diversity were identified as the key challenges for the sector.

In 2017, the Commission was present at MIDEM 2017, the international music fair in Cannes, France. Activities, which took place in the Music Moves Europe pavilion, included panel discussions on issues such as EU funding for music, the importance of live music and the promotion of Europe's music diversity online.

The Reeperbahn Festival in Hamburg in September 2017 provided another occasion to present the Commission's efforts to support Europe's music sector and the Music Moves Europe initiative in particular. The discussion revealed the need for further EU action and support especially in the following fields: music education and professionalization, cross border circulation of repertoire and mobility of artists, as well as data collection.

A key milestone is the adoption, last October, by the European Parliament of the Preparatory Action 'Music Moves Europe: Boosting European music diversity and talent'. The Commission is currently elaborating its components and will start with the implementation in the spring 2018. A further extension by the European Parliament of the Preparatory Action to 2019 and 2020 is possible.


In the context of the EU budgetary procedure for 2018, the European Parliament secured a budget of 1.5m EUR for a Preparatory Action “Music Moves Europe: Boosting European music diversity and talent” with the aim to test suitable actions for more targeted EU funding for music post-2020.

The overall aim of this Preparatory Action is to support European diversity and talent, the competitiveness of the sector as well as increased access of citizens to music in all its variety.

The Preparatory Action has four specific objectives:

  1. to develop a better understanding of the market trends and to propose sustainable mechanisms on how to monitor them, as well as to identify funding needs of the music sector,
  2. to identify innovative and sustainable distribution models that would support European music diversity,
  3. to promote the cross-border mobility of artists through different cross-sectorial training schemes which are bridging industry silos and addressing the most relevant gaps in knowledge of the sector, and
  4. to develop a strategic approach for the promotion of European music on the international market.

The Preparatory Action was officially launched at an event, hosted by Tibor Navracsics, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, on 14 February 2018 in Brussels, bringing together representative organisations from the whole music sector. 

The implementation of this Preparatory Action is an opportunity to test new ideas on how to complement the existing forms of EU support for music under the Creative Europe programme, notably the co-financing of music cooperation projects, platforms, networks, and the European prize for music (EBBA awards), as well as policy action impacting on the music sector (e.g. in the context of the Digital Single Market).

The Preparatory Action is implemented through two calls for proposals and two calls for tenders:

Music Moves Europe – Call for proposals on Online and offline distributions;

Music Moves Europe – Call for proposals on Training Scheme For Young Music Professionals;

Music Moves Europe – Call for tender 'The feasibility study for the establishment of a European Music Observatory, and a gap analysis of funding needs for the music sector';

Music Moves Europe – Call for tender 'Study on a European Music Export Strategy'.


The Commission already supports music projects through the following types of actions of Creative Europe's Culture sub-programme:

  • cooperation projects between cultural and creative organisations from different countries
  • networks helping the cultural and creative sector to operate competitively and transnationally
  • platforms to promote emerging artists and encourage European programming

You can search the  Creative Europe Project Results platform to find inspiring examples of Creative Europe-funded music projects.

Creative Europe also supports the  European Border Breaker Awards (EBBA) the European Music Awards for emerging artists. These awards celebrate new artists and recognise success in countries other than their own. Read more about the new call.