Czech government approved MC Lubomír Zaorálek’s culture rescue package
On 9 April 2020, the Czech government approved the first 1.07 billion rescue package in support of the arts and culture. It was presented by the Minister of Culture Lubomír Zaorálek in response to the COVID-19 pandemic which has a huge impact on the industry.
Based on the current situation and forecasts on organising cultural events amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ministry of Culture has prepared a material entitled Draft measures for minimizing the effects of the COVID 19 pandemic on the culture sector, which was approved today by the government. The main aim of the measures (the package) is the preservation of the professional cultural infrastructure which is not profitable and has no financial reserves. This aid is intended to support the network of theatres, museums, galleries and orchestras in all regions. Due to the government restrictions, all these institutions have lost their income and need help with operational costs. “I’m glad that I’ve managed to enforce substantial financial aid for the arts and culture as one of the most impacted industries,” said the Minister of Culture Lubomír Zaorálek about the rescue package.
Simultaneously, the Ministry is distributing 2020 subsidies of 750 million CZK. The subjects who have already received the subsidy and whose events will not take place as scheduled do not have to return the funds, provided they submit evidence of event preparation costs. These will be considered as real. The state assistance for commercial subjects, such as commercial theatres, selected summer events and big publishers, has to be coordinated at governmental level, as some other fields have been effected in the same way – for example gastronomy and tourism. At the same time, they can apply (like all entrepreneurs) for government-approved programmes, such as MPSV (Antivirus) and MPO (COVID loans, rent postponement).