Whether she has had recent discussions with representatives of the creative industries in Scotland on the impact of the UK’s exit from the EU on those industries.
I and my officials regularly meet representatives of the creative industries in Scotland, and we were pleased to be joined by representatives from Creative Scotland, the Scottish Government and the Creative Industries Council earlier this week. We will continue to work closely with colleagues in Scotland to ensure that the UK’s creative industries remain world leading following the UK’s exit from the European Union.
Notwithstanding the Minister’s answer, polling by the Independent Society of Musicians has shown that almost half of musicians in the music industry have had less work in the EU post Brexit, and 40% have had to cancel work in the EU due to the increased cost of travelling and working in the EU. How can the Minister continue to pretend that Brexit has not harmed musicians, when the costs are so enormous and have been explained to this Government many, many times?
We are continuing to work to make it easier for musicians from this country to tour in Europe, and we have managed to establish arrangements with 24 out of 27 member states that now allow visa and work permit-free routes for UK performers for short-term touring. We continue to engage in discussions with countries individually to make further improvements.
I call the SNP spokesperson.
The post-Brexit tightening of immigration rules and the Brexit-caused cost of living crisis are having a disproportionate impact on the creative sector, as the UK Government continue to squeeze public services. In advance of the autumn statement next week, what representations are the Secretary of State and the Department making to the Chancellor to ensure that the creative sector is adequately funded and protected, so that Scotland can receive the Barnett consequentials from that in order to continue to support our wonderful and, as the Minister says, world-leading creative industry?
The Chancellor has been very generous to the creative industries and I hope that he will continue to be so. However, I would point out to the hon. Lady that Creative Scotland benefits from a grant in aid budget of around £63 million, and I would have thought that she might welcome the fact that in the last March Budget the UK Government announced £8.6 million in support for two of Edinburgh’s world-leading festivals.