Culture and development cooperation
TFEU classifies development cooperation as “shared parallel competence”: this means that the EU conducts an autonomous policy, which neither prevents the Member States from exercising their competences nor makes the EU policy merely “complementary” to those of the Member States. The EU has an extensive practice of development cooperation with third countries, and is, together with its Member States, the first provider of official development assistance globally. Reduction and the eradication of poverty is the primary objective of the EU's development cooperation policy.
Culture has been an integral part of the EU vision of development cooperation104 and its overall commitment to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Following the ratification of the Convention, the EU vision on culture and development has been reinforced with an explicit recognition of the contribution of culture to MDGs, a position reflected in the outcome document of the 2010 MDG summit with regard to the contribution of culture to sustainable human, social and economic development.105
The EU’s approach to culture in development cooperation is articulated around the following objectives: integration of cultural aspects into development cooperation policies and programmes in partner countries and regions; support for culture, including cultural heritage and cultural industries, as a vector for growth in connection with tourism development, exports and trade, urban development, and education; help creating an enabling environment for the cultural and creative sectors in partner countries and enhancing exchanges between cultural professionals of the EU and of partner countries; promote peace, intercultural dialogue, respect for human rights and the emergence of an active civil society; encourage partner countries to include culture in their own poverty reduction strategies and national development plans.
EU development assistance – also for cultural expressions - is implemented through multi-annual geographic and thematic instruments covering both national and regional levels.
For the period 2007-2013, geographic instruments include the European Development Fund (Africa, Caribbean and Pacific countries)106, the Development Co-operation Instrument (Latin America, Asia and South Africa), and the European Neighbourhood & Partnership Instrument (in the neighbouring regions).Cultural expressions may be financed under all three instruments.
The thematic programme ‘Investing in People’ under the Development Co-operation Instrument, complements bilateral and regional cooperation in the area of culture. Promoting access to culture, diversity and intercultural dialogue, it supports culture as a vector for development, growth and social cohesion (€ 50 million). Emphasis is given to private/public partnerships and South-South cooperation, preservation of material and immaterial cultural heritage, establishment of networks for exchanges of expertise and good practice, and training and professionalization of the sector.