State budget brings 2.5 percent increase in culture funding
The 2020 state budget unveiled by the coalition government on Tuesday afternoon will boost culture funding by 2.5 percent, and include provision for suporting choirs and dance group leaders year-round, and not just in the period around song and dance festivals. Sports, the national library, and public broadcaster ERR fall under the culture ministry's remit and will be getting funding increases as well.
Culture minister Tõnis Lukas (Isamaa) said that the rise came in spite of the general need for tightening belts. The culture ministry's own funding will not rise, simply state, public and state-funded organizations under its auspices will see the increase.
Regarding the boon for choir and dance troupe leaders, Lukas said that: "I am very pleased that we are now starting the development of a support system for choir and dance group leaders, organizations and festivals, with an additional grant of €200,000, but we are working with the system's representative organizations, to ensure the desires of choir and dance directors and their positions are supported even between the song and dance festivals," according to
Language schools providing Estonian to adults will receive a two-million-euro boost, with Estonia's olympics team receiving an extra €2 million as well, bringing their total to €3 million, ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The National Library in Tallinn and the National Archives are to get €53 million for building reconstruction under the budget's provisions.
Public broadcaster ERR also falls under the culture ministry's remit, and is allocated €22 million for the construction of a new TV house adjacent to the existing radio and news houses on Gonsiori and Kreutzwaldi Streets in Tallinn, replacing the TV house on Gonsiori Street.
The culture ministry managed to make savings on the renovation of Kalev Stadium in Tallinn, which came in cheaper than forecast. Operating and investment reserves have also been reduced.
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Editor: Andrew Whyte