Germany’s live industry says it will not be able to cope with new challenges such as skyrocketing energy prices if the government does not provide further financial aid.
Jens Michow, president of the Federal Association of the Concert and Event Industry (BDKV), was invited to a government hearing, held on Wednesday (12 October), to discuss the consequences of the energy crisis on the cultural sector.
He told the committee for culture and media that the crisis is presenting the industry with another existential threat and that it has not been able to properly restart after the Covid-19 pandemic.
Among other things, Michow called for the existing Neustart Kultur II (Restart Culture 2) fund to be continued at least until the end of 2023 and for the organisers to be relieved of the burden of absorbing increases in energy costs at the venues.
In addition, he urged the government to create a fund for cultural events that can be used if events are no longer economical due to excessively increased energy costs, and also to strengthen the energy self-sufficiency of venues.
“WE DEMAND THAT ALL REMAINING FUNDS FROM 2022 REMAIN UNRESTRICTED IN THE ECONOMIC SECTOR”
Michow also told the committee that it was a major problem for the industry that from 2023 there would no longer be any cover for event cancellations caused by the pandemic.
“[The €2.5 billion government-backed insurance pot] is expected to have remaining funds of €1.5–1.8 billion by the end of the year. We demand that all remaining funds from 2022 remain unrestricted in the economic sector for which they were originally made available,” he said.
Last month, IQ heard from a number of European arenas who also said that skyrocketing energy costs are emerging as the sector’s biggest challenge since the Covid-19 pandemic.
AEG-owned Barclays Arena (formerly the Barclaycard Arena) in Hamburg, Germany, was among the venues that reported a “huge” increase in energy costs.
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