2018 to be the European Year of Cultural Heritage

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2018 to be the European Year of Cultural Heritage2018 to be the European Year of Cultural Heritage. Initiative aims to raise awareness on European history and values.

The Council of the EU, represented by the Maltese Presidency, and European Parliament have reached a provisional agreement on a decision that will establish 2018 as a European Year of Cultural Heritage.

This initiative aims to raise awareness on European history and values whilst strengthening a sense of European identity. It draws attention to the opportunities that our cultural heritage offers, while also reminding us of the challenges it faces, with the impact of the digital shift, environmental and physical pressure on heritage sites, and the illicit trafficking of cultural objects.

This European Year’s main objectives are: to promote cultural diversity, intercultural dialogue and social cohesion, to highlight cultural heritages economic contributions to the cultural and creative sectors, including small and medium-sized enterprises, as well as to local and regional development, and to emphasise cultural heritage’s role in EU external relations, with examples including conflict prevention, post-conflict reconciliation and the rebuilding and repair of destroyed cultural heritage. 2018 is also the year celebrating Valletta as one of the two European capitals of culture.

The European Parliament’s representatives will be given the opportunity to participate as observers during the meetings of national coordinators convened by the European Commission for the running of European Year.

At a meeting in the near future, EU Ambassadors (Coreper I) will be invited to endorse the agreement with Ambassador Neil Kerr, the Chairman of Coreper I, then sending a letter to the European Parliament’s CULT committee Chairperson. Should Parliament adopt the compromise text approved by Coreper I, the letter will indicate that the Council will adopt the text without amendments in first reading, enabling the new legislation to enter force and allowing the European Commission and EU Member States the time needed for necessary preparations.

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