Call for support for the cultural sector in the trilogue discussions on the revision of the community code on visas (Visa Code)

14th December 2014

Brussels, 13 December 2018


Call for support for the cultural sector in the trilogue discussions on the revision of the Community code on visas (Visa Code).

The undersigned 75 organisations from across the cultural and creative sectors call upon the European Institutions to take into consideration the specific concerns of the sector.

The cultural sector in Europe desires transparent and easy application processes when inviting artists, cultural professionals, touring groups, and others from visa-required countries. A diverse cultural offer in Europe’s concert halls and arenas, theatres and festivals, city events or other cultural initiatives, allows to attract audiences, generate income for the cultural and creative sectors, as well as for other economic sectors (tourism, bars, restaurants, hotels…) and public sources.

In this regard, the undersigned wish to call the attention of the European Institutions in view of the trilogue meetings on the specific needs for artists and culture professionals who require a visa to travel to the Schengen area.

In particular we underline:

  • The importance of recognising that the 90/180 day rule severely impacts cultural exchanges by limiting mobility and the number of events
  • The need to be able to submit a visa application in the consulate of the destination country where the host organisation is based
  • The possibility to lodge an application nine months in advance
  • The importance of a clear definition of the costs included in the visa fees requested by service providers and the possibility for applicants to be further allowed to lodge applications directly at consulate
  • The need for including an option for a reduced visa fee of 60 EUR, such as for applicants whose data are already entered in the Visa Information System and for cultural touring groups
  • The need to keep the application process for Multiple Entry Visa as simple and transparent as possible

We hope we can count on your support in taking into consideration the particularities of the cultural sectors and to find agreement on that basis.

The undersigned organisations

AEC (European Association of Conservatoires)

Arts and Theatre Institute – Czech Mobility Info Point ASEF – Asia Europe Foundation

CAE (Culture Action Europe)

CEPI (European Coordination of Independent Producers) CIRCOSTRADA (European Network Circus and Street Arts) Cité Internationale des Arts – Paris

DutchCulture – Centre for International Cooperation EAEA (European Arts and Entertainment Alliance) European Choral Association – Europa Cantat

ECA (European Circus Association) ECF (European Cultural Foundation)

ECSA (European Composers and Songwriters Alliance) EFA (European Festivals Association)

E-FAITH (European Federation of Associations for industrial heritage and technical heritage) EFFORTS (European Federation of Fortified Sites)

EJN (European Jazz Network)

ELIA (European League of Institutes of the Arts) EMC (European Music Council)

ENCATC (European Network on Cultural Management and Policy) ENCC (European Network of Cultural Centres)

ESNS – Eurosonic Noorderslag

ETC (European Theatre Convention)

EUROCINEMA (Association of Films and Television Producers) EUROPA Distribution


European Coalition for Cultural Diversity

EUROZINE (European Network of Cultural journals and online magazines) FEDEC (European Federation of Professional Circus Schools)

Fédération Mondiale du Cirque

FEP (Federation of European Publishers) FERA – Federation of European Film Directors

FIAD – International Federation of Film Distributors Associations FIAPF – International Federation of Film Producers’ Associations HowlRound Theatre Commons US/NL

IAMIC – International Association of Music Information Centres IAO – International Artist Organisation

IETM (International Network for Contemporary Performing Arts)

IFACCA (International Federation of Arts Councils and Culture Agencies) IG Kultur Österreich

IGCAT – International Institute of Gastronomy, Culture, Arts and Tourism IMMF International Music Managers Forum

IMPALA (Independent Music Companies Association) IMPF – Independent Music Publishers Forum

INCD – International Network on Cutural Diversity INES – Innovation Network of European Showcases

IN-SITU (European Platform for Artistic Creation in Public Space) ISFE – Europe’s video game industry

ITI Germany

IVF – International Video Federation

JM International (Jeunesses Musicales International) KEA European Affairs

Kulturrat österreich / Austrian Cultural Council

Live DMA (European network for music venues and festivals) LIVEUROPE (the live music platform for new European talent) LPA – Live Performance Australia

Michael Culture Association MobiCulture – Mobility Info Point France NHIMBE Trust

On the Move (Cultural Mobility Information Network) Opera Europa

PEARLE* – Live Performance Europe

RBCMN – Robert Bosch Cultural Managers Network REMA (European Early Music Network)

Res Artis (Worldwide Network of Artist Residencies) RUCO (Russian Union of Concert Organisations) Russian Theatre Union

Scensverige /Swedish ITI SEE Heritage Network SISTEMA Europe

UNIC (International Union of Cinemas) VAUNET – German Media Association YOUROPE (the European Festivals Association) Zbigniew Raszewski – Theatre Institute Poland

Zone Franche – Le Réseau de Musique du Monde