Periodic Report Serbia

Executive summary

Ratification of the Convention 2005 in Serbian Parliament scientifically contributed to the development of cultural system. In scope of 2009-2012., several new regulations and adopted laws have been addressing cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue, while it presents one of the basic principles of cultural development in the Law on Culture. The production, dissemination and diversity of cultural expressions were provided by the Ministry of Culture and Media through annual Open Competitions for co- financing, as well as various cultural and media projects/programs were funded due to the signed documents of cooperation on different government levels. The Working group for the development of creative industries within the Ministry of Culture and Media was established.

Reconstruction projects with a longer-term impact enjoy priority over short-term projects. Cultural institutions of national importance, such as National Museum, National Library of Serbia, Yugoslav Cinemateque, were reconstructed in this period and network of cinemas were digitalized. Special emphasis was put on reduction of income taxes contributed to the improvement of artists' social and economic status and tax deductions for investments into culture were increased.

The outcome of state support to the networking and cooperation (CSO, SMEs, etc) is appearing of several collaborative platforms and clusters in cultural industries. In the four year period, five professional associations from the field of visual arts gain status of the representative cultural associations on national level. Apart from the signed Programs and Protocols on cultural cooperation with many countries at the bilateral level, activities at the regional and multilateral level also resulted in signing of Declarations with countries of the Southeast Europe emphasizing cultural diversity. A new practice in international cooperation, within the strengthening of traditional cooperation, is to introduce the areas of culture and arts, into the documents concerning economic and scientific technical cooperation. Likewise, presentation of Serbian culture abroad was high on the agenda on international relations. One of the important dates is the accession of Serbia to the North-South Centre of the Council of Europe in 2009. Institutes of cultural studies conducted few national surveys addressing the cultural policy with focus on cultural resources of the cities and municipalities. The final results will be orientation for future cultural planning, in same time, ensuring an insight to overall cultural system of Serbia. Following this direction, unique local cultural potentials would become a vector for economic development of the Serbian regions, which is declared in the Law of Culture in force.

The visibility of the Convention was provided by organizing various public events dedicated to cultural industries field. In 2011 the Ministry of Culture signed the Protocol on cooperation with the umbrella organization “Independent Culture Scene of Serbia”, which officially confirmed the significance and active role of the civil society in creating cultural policy.

It is clear that adoption of the Convention strongly contributed to cultural system reform process and on this way Serbia receives a stimulus for a long term development and democratic management reforms.

The main achievements in implementation of the Convention would be: new legislation becoming in force, financial support to cultural diversity and straitening partnerships with the CSO. Further implementation of the Convention, especially at local level, is considered as the main challenge.