Costa Rica's music sector to be strengthened with assistance from UNESCO and the European Union

Costa Rica is one of twelve countries worldwide that have been selected to benefit from the EU/UNESCO programme “Supporting new regulatory frameworks to strenghten cultura and creative industries and promote South-South cooperation”. In Costa Rica, technical assistance will be provided specifically to strengthen the competitiveness of the music sector through the design of measures aiming to optimize the use of public funds, promote public-private partnerships, and establish professional associations. The project also envisages to provide support to Costa Rica's efforts to promote the transition of Creative and Cultural Industries (CCIs) to the formal economy. 


The official launch of the 'Musica FFWD' project took place during a virtual event on Thursday 4 February 2021 with the participation of the Minister of Culture and Youth of Costa Rica, Ms. Sylvie Durán Salvatierra, the Minister of Labour and Social Security, Ms. Silvia Lara Povedano, the representative of the European Union in Costa Rica, Ms. Birgit Vleugels, Cooperation Officer of the European Union Delegation in Costa Rica, and Ms. Caroline Munier, Programme Specialist for Culture of the UNESCO Cluster Office in San José. Also present were representatives of key partner institutions that will be involved in the implementation of this project, such as the Costa Rican Social Security Fund and the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Commerce. The event was followed attended by music sector organisations such as the Unión de Trabajadores de la Música (Music Workers Union), the Asociación Compositores y Autores Musicales (the Association of Music Authors and Composers) , the Asociación de Intérpretes y Ejecutantes (Association of Artists), and the Centro Nacional de la Música (National Centre of Music).


"This project aims to expand the possibilities for the development of the music sector through greater access to national and international markets. We also hope that it will boost efforts to fully integrate the cultural sector into the formal economy, recognizing the particularities of work in the sector and the multiple economic and non-economic contributions that this sector makes to society as a whole".


Caroline Munier, Culture Programme Specialist UNESCO San José


Sylvie Durán, Minister of Culture and Youth, emphasized that this technical assistance project aims to strengthen the capacities and conditions of the music sector, which was severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.


"In this framework, we will be able to update our understanding of how this sector develops – as the first to have been transformed by digitalization (since the 1990s) - and optimize our efforts, intersectoral work and the use of public resources to face the involved challenges".


Sylvie Durán, Minister of Culture and Youth, Costa Rica


The Minister of Labor and Social Security reflected on the need to redefine the concept of labor formality, especially in relation to the field of culture.


"When you think about what the transition to formality means, you have to be careful not to try to put all this workforce in a straitjacket or a box where they don't fit, so that they adapt to a way of thinking about social protection that doesn't respond to their ways of working".


This project is implemented by an international team of UNESCO experts in the fields of music and social security. Through this project, UNESCO and the European Union hope to contribute to the revitalization of Costa Rica's artistic and cultural sectors, which have been severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Because cultural work generates economic growth, decent employment and promotes intercultural dialogue and social cohesion, UNESCO underlines that culture is a key factor for economic and social recovery and for the fulfilment of the goals of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Costa Rica.