Life after Brexit

The Creative Industries Federation has published its interim Brexit Report, outlining ‘red-line’ issues and with recommendations. Here is AI’s guide to it

The arts cannot only survive the UK leaving the European Union, they can thrive, ac- cording the interim Brexit Report presented to the government last week by the Creative Industries Federation.

But first the creative industries must be put at the heart of government thinking as it develops a new industrial strategy - and tackles the splits in society caused by the referendum in June.

“This is the fastest growing sector of UK economy and includes all the things that Britain is famous for” John Kampfner, CEO of the CIF said. “The challenge is to seize the opportunity sectors in the British economy and prioritise them in future trade deals.

“While the political circumstances are constantly changing, this report produces initial recommendations and explains how the UK’s creative sector currently engages with the EU so that sensible decisions can be made.”

First, the CIF believes Britain should maintain freedom of movement for those working in the creative industries to and from the UK.

It is vital for two reasons, it says: to cover the lack of skills here because of failures on the education system, and the wider diversity of cultural input that ensures the cultural relevance overseas of Britain’s cultural offer. New visa rules should be fashioned to facilitate this, and to ensure that artists such as musicians can continue to travel easily to meet engagements.

The report also wants the government to keep access to EU funding for the arts open. The UK receives more funding through Creative Europe than almost any other country, including from the £80 billion Horizon 2020 innovation scheme.

“It has taken two decades and more to turn our creative industries from an afterthought to a key driver of wealth and global success” said

the designer Sir John Sorrell, the CIF founder and chairman. “To imperil that would be to imperil our wider economy. That is why we need to be at the heart of the new government’s industrial strategy and negotiating priorities in coming months.”

The 73-page report has been com- piled with the approval of the Creative Industries Council, the forum between the government and cultural industries. It draws on evidence from 500 contributors gleaned during 11 meetings held around the country and a members’ survey.

Freedom of movement is essential to maintaining the soft power of the creative and cultural industries, Kampfner told AI, and there are crucial points that need to be taken into account:

  • . Creative employment and skills shortages in the UK 
  • . The international make-up of the creative industries workforce 
  • . Economic benefits of an international workforce 
  • . Status of existing non-UK EU workforce 
  • . Freedom of movement 
  • . Higher education 
  • . The need for a visa system  appropriate for the creative  industries 
  • . The need for an education policy to deliver the skills the creative industries need
    The recommendations are wider, however, and the report divides its them in to short, medium and long term. 

    SHORT TERM – URGENT ACTION

    • There needs to be creative industry/government partnership to tackle trade barriers, open new markets and protect intellectual property rights.


    • There should be negotiations on the digital single market on issues such as copyright, media regulation and data.
    • EU nationals working in the UK should immediately be told they can stay.


    • The government should affirm its commitment to maintaining creative industry tax reliefs, sustaining core intellectual property rules and taking online copyright infringement.

    • EU nationals working in the UK should immediately be told they can stay.

    • The government should affirm its commitment to maintaining creative industry tax reliefs, sustaining core intellectual property rules and taking online copyright infringement.

    • Apprenticeships and technical education policies should broaden opportunities in the creative industries and encourage the training of freelancers. 

    •  Lnks between the creative industries and education should be strengthened, with the new Teaching excellence framework being made more relevant. 

    MEDIUM TERM – BEFORE BREXIT 

    •  Our creative industries should be kept free of non-tariff barriers, with the UK kept within the eU “country of origin” framework for the regulation of audio visual media services. 

    •  In the interest of continued growth for the UK’s creative industries, freedom of investment from and in eU industries should be retained. 

    •  The government should commit to future UK/EU co-operation on intellectual property issues. 

    •  There should be continued ease of movement for time-limited activities like concert tours, temporary exhibitions and film production. 

    •  There should be continued tariff-free access to the eU market for goods. 

    •  There should be government support for creative industries’ exports. 

    •  The benefits to the creative and cultural sectors from EU funding sources should be
    at least maintained. 

    • The government and industry should work together to nurture business support
    programmes, particularly to develop an access-to-finance support scheme for small
    and medium sized enterprises. 

    •  There should be government support for affordable high speed broadband
    networks, vital for creative and tech businesses. 

    •  The UK should commit to the European Capital of Culture programme – due to be
    hosted by the UK in 2023 – and more Cities of Culture such as hull. 

    • The migration system should be reformed to make access to skills from both eU and non-eU countries easy. 

    • Funding for research and development should continue post-exit, including continued association with horizon 2020, the European Commission’s R&D programme. 

    • The UK should try to maintain participation in Creative Europe, the European Commission’s framework programme for support to the culture and audiovisual sectors, to assist cultural exports from this country, or commit alternative funding. 

    • Once the terms of the exit are established the government must review eU-based regulations and modify them in the interests of consumers and businesses. 

    • Scope for improving creative sector tax incentives should be explored. 

    AT FULL EXIT 

    • The migration system should be reformed to make access to skills from both eU and non-eU countries easy. 

    • Funding for research and development should continue post-exit, including continued association with horizon 2020, the European Commission’s R&D programme. 

    • The UK should try to maintain participation in Creative Europe, the European Commission’s framework programme for support to the culture and audiovisual sectors, to assist cultural exports from this country, or commit alternative funding. 

    • Once the terms of the exit are established the government must review eU-based regulations and modify them in the interests of consumers and businesses. 

    • Scope for improving creative sector tax incentives should be explored. 

     

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