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Creative Industries: Support to Work in the EU

Volume 685: debated on Thursday 10 December 2020

What plans he has to support the creative industries to work in the EU when the transitional arrangements with the EU come to an end. (910129)

The Government continue to engage with creative sectors so that they know how to prepare for changes at the end of the transition period. We are seeking a reciprocal arrangement with the EU that would allow UK citizens to undertake some business activities in the EU without a work permit on a short-term basis. We cannot comment on the details of those arrangements at the moment, as the negotiations are still ongoing.

As the least musically talented member ever of the Musicians Union, I draw the House’s attention to my entry in the Register of Members’ Financial Interests. I am sort of pleased that the Minister gave that answer, although it does mean that I am slightly floundering as to what question to ask her now, because that was what I was going to ask. Musicians really need that reciprocal exemption. I know she says that what is important is that they are ready and prepared for when they can resume touring again, but it is really late in the day to leave this, and Ministers told the Musicians Union that it would be quite an easy thing to do. Is it possible to get some reassurance to them now, rather than later?

I pay tribute to the hon. Lady; she may not have musical talent, but she has some of the best musical taste in this House. The cultural and creative sectors are, as she knows, some of the UK’s greatest success stories and produce talent that is recognised the world over. Being outside the EU will not change that, but it does mean that we need practical changes on both sides of the channel. That will not come as a big surprise; DCMS has been engaging for very long time with the relevant trade and membership bodies, which cover a membership of approximately 150,000 businesses and freelancers. We have also had “Get ready for Brexit” and “Check. Change. Go.” public information campaigns, so we have been keeping people updated every step of the way.