The Ministers met senior leaders from 12 representative organisations for the arts and culture sectors, to hear their views on the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union and what it means for their members.
The cultural sector – including museums, galleries, and arts — contributed £27 billion to the UK economy in 2015, making up 1.6 per cent of total UK GVA in that year.
Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport Karen Bradley said:
Arts, museums and heritage are not only a fundamental part of our national identity, they make a significant contribution to the UK both culturally and economically.
We will continue to be an outward-looking country post-Brexit, and promoting our world-leading arts and culture will be hugely important as we champion the UK abroad in the coming months and years.
This meeting, and the series of roundtables I am chairing attended by key representatives from our sectors, will help ensure they have a strong voice as we prepare for negotiations to exit the European Union.
Minister for Exiting the European Union Robin Walker said:
Leaving the European Union doesn’t mean we’re pulling up the drawbridge on the continent. What Brexit means is delivering the referendum result, and establishing a new, mutually beneficial relationship with the EU.
The UK is the same outward-looking, globally-minded, flexible and dynamic country it are always been.
I truly believe our world-class arts, museums and galleries will continue to flourish and attract visitors, talent and investment from around the globe after Brexit — and I was pleased to hear today that they are already thinking about the opportunities that this historic moment will bring.
Organisations that attended the roundtable at Portcullis House included:
- Arts Council England
- Heritage Lottery Fund
- British Council
- National Museums Directors’ Council
- Museums Association
- National Theatre
- Royal Opera House
- Science Museum Group
- Association of British Orchestras
- UK Theatre/Society of London Theatre
- ONE Dance UK
- Association of Independent Museums
The meeting was part of a series of roundtables, aimed at finding out the priorities of a wide range of sectors before negotiations to leave the EU begin.
Negotiations to leave the EU will begin once the Prime Minister triggers Article 50, which she has said she will do by the end of March.
The Government has committed to protecting the status of EU nationals already working and living in the UK. The only circumstances where that wouldn’t happen would be if the rights of British citizens living in EU states weren’t protected in return.