The Ministers of Culture and experts from the Visegrad Group countries met on April 28–29, 2005 in the historical city of Banska Bystrica. Invited were also Ministers of Culture, Vice Ministers of Culture and representatives from Austria, the Russian Federation, Slovenia and Ukraine.
Before the meeting of the Ministers, on the April 27, 2005 the meeting of experts was held. On the expert meeting were discussed four subjects: awarding the Visegrad Prize, coordination of the opinions on the draft of the European Commission Culture 2007–2013 new program, working-out of a strategic comparative study on social impact of the cultural industry development and implementation of the Visegrad book edition. In the same time was discussed also information on the project status of issuing mutual CD collection of the classic music as well as upgrading of mutual design exhibition project.
The Ministers of Culture have adopted the following conclusions:
- The Ministers awarded the Visegrad Prize to Mr. Laszlo Szigeti for his important publishing activities deepening the cultural relations and cooperation among the nations of the Visegrad Group and Central Europe.
- The Ministers agreed on the importance of mutual approach at supporting mobilityof the artists in frames of the draft of European Commission program Culture 2007–2013.
- The Ministers of Culture agreed to launch a joint comparative study on economical and social impact of the cultural industry development in the Visegrad Group countries. Slovakia will host first expert meeting in Bratislava in September 2005.
- The Ministers of Culture of the Visegrad Group approved the continuation of the Visegrad Library project.
- The possibilities of cooperation in film art had been discussed and set in a Declaration attached to the present communique, forming an integral part of the document.
- The Ministers of Culture appreciated the efforts of the Republic of Poland at implementation of the project of mutual collection of classic music recordings and recommended to realize the project by Poland from Polish part of Ministers of Culture Visegrad Group Fund. The other countries obliged themselves according to their possibilities to make their musical archives available as well as to help at media promotion of this project.
- Poland introduced the project of TV profiles of writers from the Visegrad Group countries.
- Slovakia introduced the project of the colloquy of librarians of the Visegrad Group countries.
The 14th meeting of the Ministers of Culture of the Visegrad Group countries will be held in the Czech Republic in the autumn 2005.
Done and signed in Banska Bystrica on April 29, 2005.
Petra Smolikova, Vice Minister of Culture, The Czech Republic
Andras Bozoki, Minister of the Cultural Heritage, The Republic of Hungary
Maciej Klimczak, Vice Minister of Culture, The Republic of Poland
Rudolf Chmel, Minister of Culture, The Slovak Republic
Declaration of the Ministers of Culture of V4 on Central European Film Co-operation
Ministers of culture of Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovak Republic were informed of the setting up of an open forum—central European initiative on film co-operation (CEC1) established by:
- National representatives of Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovak Republic and Slovenia in the Board of Management of Eurimages
- National representatives of participating countries in the MEDIA Committee
- Several film producers of participating countries
- Representatives of several public film funds
- Representatives of ministries responsible for audiovisual and film policy designed to stimulate closer co-operation between the participating countries.
Ministers of culture discussed the rationale for CECI conceived by the founders of the informal initiative, namely:
- The participating countries are natural partners in the field of film art and film distribution
- If participating countries create an effective regulatory framework for mutually beneficial co-operation they will be in a stronger position to be awarded support from pan-European filmfunds, to gain access to the European distribution market, and to build successful film industries
- The audiovisual policies of participating countries should expressly acknowledge the benefits tobe derived from co-operation in general and specifically from CECI
- Participating countries would welcome the support of minority co-productions, in such a way asto foster mutual, cross-border relationships among producers throughout the CECI region on a basis of guaranteed reciprocity
- CECI should stimulate co-operation in the areas of project development, promotion, marketingand distribution of produced films, and professional events such as seminars and workshops
- A new, co-operative information network and a joint database is needed to equip producersthroughout the CECI region with the information and tools necessary to enable them to combinetheir strengths and confront the realities of the international market.
Ministers of culture concluded that CECI meets the needs of their national film industries in terms of the circulation potential of films made in participating countries and their capability of achieving visibility in the European market as a whole; hi this way CECI reflects and responds to the challenge facing countries of the region to contribute to a distinctive, contemporary European cinema.
Accordingly ministers of culture expressed their welcome for the initiative. They also declared their readiness to introduce into the audiovisual policies of their respective countries measures to ensure closer co-operation throughout the region in the field of film.
Banska Bystrica, April 28, 2005
Petra Smolikova, Czech Republic
Andras Bozoki, Hungary
Maciej Klimczak, Poland
Rudolf Chmel, Slovak Republic