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Frontpage News 2008 Poland launches 4.4 million Cultural exchange fund

Poland launches 4.4 million Cultural exchange fund

A €4.4 million cultural exchange fund earmarked to partnership projects between Poland and the EEA EFTA states was launched at a two-day conference on 7-8 February 2008.

The fund, which is supported with a €4 million grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway and €0.4 million from the Polish government, will support cultural projects based on cooperation between Polish players and entities from the donor states. Grants will be awarded to projects within the fields of music and performing arts, cultural heritage, plastic and visual arts, and literature and archives.

At the launch event at Warsaw's Royal Castle, Norway's Minister of Culture and Church Affairs, Trond Giske, said Poland and Norway should congratulate each other on the opportunities the cultural exchange fund will provide. "I am positive that the fund will strengthen and broaden our cultural ties. This truly warms my heart", Giske said.

Poland and the three EEA EFTA states agreed to put the spotlight on bilateral cooperation opportunities in response to the considerable interest seen in the priority sector for cultural heritage in the previous calls for individual projects in Poland. The €4.4 million boost to cultural exchanges therefore tops the €78.6 million already set aside to cultural individual projects.

All projects supported under the fund are required to have partners from Iceland, Lichtenstein or Norway. The application needs to be submitted by a Polish applicant. The fund's first open call will be launched shortly, and project proposals can then be submitted to the fund manager, the Polish Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.

Potential Norwegian partners can contact the funds' cooperating section in the Norwegian Ministry of Culture and Church Affairs, by e-mail: kulturutvekslingsfondet@kkd.dep.no.

A one-day seminar on the EEA Grants and the possibilities for bilateral partnership projects will be held in Oslo on 13 March. More information about the seminar can be found at www.europaportalen.no.