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13 projects selected for cultural cooperation with Western Balkan countries

  • 7 months 6 days ago
  • programme

The European Commission has selected 13 projects out of 350 applications for a call on cultural cooperation between EU Member States and Western Balkan countries.

The European Commission received a record number of almost 350 applications for cultural cooperation between Member States and the Western Balkans.

The 13 projects selected will be receiving funding from the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA). These projects involve 90 cultural organisations, 54 from the Western Balkans:

  • 15 from Serbia
  • 12 from North Macedonia,
  • 6 from Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • 7 from each Albania, Montenegro and Kosovo*.

The other 36 participating organisations are from EU Member States. All the selected projects mobilise large partnerships and neighbouring EU Member States from the region were particularly active. This underlines the relevance of the call not only for the target countries (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Republic of North Macedonia, Kosovo, Montenegro and Serbia) but also for EU Member States.

The Western Balkans will benefit from more than half of the funding of this call in the selected projects, which represent most of the main cultural sectors.

Sectors covered

  • publishing
  • architecture
  • theatre
  • dance
  • music
  • painting
  • photography
  • graphic arts
  • digital arts
  • intangible and tangible culture (such as museums and historical sites)

Almost all projects address cross-cutting priorities of the EU’s cultural policies such as gender equality, minorities and vulnerable groups, migration, environmental issues, as well as women and youth in culture.

With this call the EU addresses the needs of the cultural sectors in the region while supporting regional cooperation, inter-cultural dialogue and reconciliation.

New partnerships

Another benefit of the call is that it involves smaller organisations that have received funding in cultural cooperation projects for the first time.
The high number of applicants stresses the relevance of this call to the needs of the cultural and creative sectors in the Western Balkans. It also shows how well the region can make the most of such funding opportunities.

Background about the call

The European Commission published the call in December 2019 and the results of the selection during the summer of 2020.

The call was

  • funded by the Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR) with €5 million through the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA)
  • managed by the Directorate-General for Education, Youth, Sport and Culture
  • implemented by the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency.

* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244/1999 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.

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