The Netherlands to step up cultural cooperation with Ukraine

The Dutch government has designated Ukraine a ‘focus country’ in its international cultural policy. State Secretary for Culture and Media Gunay Uslu announced this at a meeting of EU culture ministers in Brussels. Ukraine’s status as a focus country will increase the scope for cultural cooperation, investment and exchange.

‘It’s now more important than ever to collaborate on culture,’ Ms Uslu said.  ‘Anything of value is vulnerable – especially in a time of war. By designating Ukraine a focus country in our international cultural policy we can help the sector in this regard. And not only with financial aid via dedicated funds, but also with practical support and exchanges of knowledge and personnel. In this way the Netherlands is helping Ukraine resist Russian war crimes involving the destruction of cultural infrastructure and heritage.’

The Russian regime’s war against Ukraine has left deep scars in all kinds of areas, including when it comes to heritage, art and culture. The government has added the country to its focus list in order to make it easier to collaborate with Ukraine on cultural matters. The Dutch embassy and Dutch cultural institutions can support joint projects, for example. There is also scope for exchanges involving artists and other professionals in the cultural and creative sector. In addition, the Netherlands has already begun arranging emergency aid to help restore damaged museums and collections.