The Education, Youth, Culture and Sport Council will take place in Brussels on 31 May. Baroness Neville-Rolfe, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State and Minister for intellectual property will represent the UK at the both the culture/audiovisual and the sport sections of the Council.
Culture and audiovisual
The Commission is expected to present its draft proposal for a recast audiovisual media services directive. The audiovisual media services directive seeks to ensure the effective operation of the internal market for television broadcasting services by ensuring the free movement of broadcasting services throughout the EU. This new proposal follows a Commission consultation on revision of the existing directive, to which the UK submitted a detailed response.
The presentation will be immediately followed by a policy debate on revision of the audiovisual media directive and the promotion of European content. The UK intervention will reiterate the key messages in its response to the Commission consultation, including the importance of maintaining the country of origin principle that means a channel is regulated in the country in which it is licensed, rather than each of the countries to which it broadcasts.
The Council will then be asked to adopt Council conclusions on the role of Europeana for the digital access, visibility and use of European cultural heritage. The conclusions will emphasise the importance of promoting access to cultural heritage through digital channels and will propose that Europeana moves to a more sustainable funding model by October 2017. The UK intends to support the adoption of the conclusions.
Turning to the sport sector, the Council is expected to adopt draft conclusions on enhancing integrity, transparency and good governance in major sport events. The draft conclusions look to ensure that integrity, transparency and good governance are present through all stages of a major sporting event, including feasibility, bidding, preparation, organisation, evaluation, and legacy. The UK has already embedded these measures into the bidding processes for major sporting events and so intends to support adoption of the conclusions.
This will be followed by policy debate on improving governance in sport. The debate will be focused on the role Governments can play in the promotion of integrity and governance of sport. The UK will intervene to share examples of work the UK is already carrying out around governance and integrity in sport and to highlight the Prime Minister’s recent anti-corruption summit and the domestic charter for sport and governance code, which will be launched later this year.
The European Commission will present information on the forthcoming European year of cultural heritage (2018). This will then be followed by information from the French delegation on the interoperability of digital content. The Council will then be presented with information on the recent World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) meeting in Montreal. This information will be provided by the EU member states representatives in WADA: Belgium, UK and Malta.
The European Commission will then present information on this year’s European week of sport and introduce recent Commission studies on i) specificity of sport, and, ii) the contribution of sport to regional development through the structural funds.
Additional items will also be presented by Italy, on funding of the European youth orchestra, and Poland, on the financing of cultural projects under the European regional development fund.
Finally, there will be a presentation from the Slovak delegation on the work programme for their incoming presidency of the Council of the EU.
The UK will also be represented at a high-level structured dialogue on sport after the main Council meeting. This dialogue has been organised by the Netherlands EU presidency to facilitate an exchange of views between member state Ministers, the EU Commissioner responsible for sport and leading representatives of the IOC, EOC, FIFA and UEFA on enhancing dialogue and co-operation regarding major sport events.