Minister for National Heritage, the Arts and Local Government Owen Bonnici stated that, “this launch brings to fruition one of the major instruments that will significantly contribute towards the implementation of the National Cultural Policy 2021. Strategy 2025 was developed in partnership with a number of stakeholders from the cultural and creative sectors, as well as members of the public who have the arts and culture at heart. It is also in tune with the policy that envisions culture being embraced for the wellbeing of all. Wider participation in the arts and culture leads to more innovation, creative engagement, artistic legacy, active citizenship, and overall enhanced wellbeing—and this is where this Strategy becomes integral.”
Strategy 2025 is based on ten guiding principles underpinned by the concept of cultural rights as defined by UNESCO, building upon the tenets of UN Sustainable Development Goals and the UNESCO recommendations on the Status of the Artist, as in Malta’s National Cultural Policy 2021.
Albert Marshall, Executive Chairman Arts Council Malta stated that, “The importance of cultural rights, when taken in the context of sustainable development goals, should be emphasised and directly related to the Status of the Artist; an outcome which is definitely more visible now than ever, more so with the challenges we have faced on a global level in the past couple of years.” Marshall also explained that Strategy 2025 reflects the national, European, and international discourses revolving around the trajectories of cultural policy in its widest sense. The cross-sectoral interconnections, which value the intrinsic qualities of artistic expression, are brought to the forefront through this Strategy, as we aim to adopt an open, collaborative, participatory, and facilitative approach on how we implement our measures in the coming years, as well as how we want to achieve this.
The Strategy states that the Council’s vision is for “the arts to be at the heart of Malta’s future”, as embedded within its six strategic goals including: to invest in and foster diverse artistic and cultural expression; to support and promote the conditions in which Malta’s cultural and creative sectors can flourish; to advocate and provide for community-led opportunities to engage in arts and culture; to strengthen Malta’s international cultural relations to continue developing international artistic exchanges and collaborations; to nurture cross-sectoral collaborations that contribute to Malta’s sustainable development; and to facilitate cultural partners, including public cultural organisations so as to build and strengthen organisational capacity.
In order to fulfil these goals, six strategic areas are outlined, each defined by overall objectives, priorities, and actions. The actions demonstrate the Council’s approach towards its investment, support, advocacy, research, and collaboration efforts through participatory decision-making methods. The interconnected strategic areas that drive these actions are: public investment, diversity and communities, education and development, internationalisation, creative entrepreneurship, and research and evaluation.
Funding and Strategy Director Mary Ann Cauchi said that Strategy 2025 is a document that aims to put into action the right to culture by ensuring that our initiatives and programmes are aimed towards widening access to artistic practice. Furthermore, by facilitating diverse cultural expressions and ensuring an equitable and inclusive direction for our advocacy and investments, we will be supporting creativity to flourish in every context.
The Strategy 2025 document is available in English and Maltese here. For more information, contact Arts Council Malta on 2334 7230, on weekdays, between 09:00 and 16:00, or send an email on firstname.lastname@example.org.