Title Original Language:
The potential impact of Brexit on the creative industries, tourism and the digital single market
Abstract Original Language:
The UK has a dynamic and highly competitive presence in the creative and digital technology sectors, including telecommunications, and our tourism industry is one of the largest and most innovative in the world. These are by no means the only sectors which fall under the ambit of the new Digital, Culture, Media & Sport Department, but they form the focus of this report, as these are the industries within its responsibility which have expressed the most wide-ranging concerns about the challenges posed by the country’s proposed withdrawal from the European Union. With regard to the UK’s creative industries, London — Europe’s most visited city — is likely to be sufficiently well-established to withstand challenges from other potential European creative ‘hubs’, although other major European cities — including Berlin, Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona and Dublin — do have ambitions of their own, which should not be under-estimated. A large percentage of the workforce supporting the creative industries and tourism is made up of EU nationals, however, and the overwhelming message from businesses and organisations across these sectors was to retain the free movement of people, thereby protecting access to talent. This underlines the need for reliable data now about the workforce and possible skills gaps. Clarity of proposed revised immigration rules and processes is essential to businesses in the creative industries to allow them time to prepare for any new Brexit environment. EU funding has been important across these industries as a catalyst to unlock other forms of funding, whether public or private. Current uncertainty over the nature of long-term funding would be assuaged by a Government mapping exercise setting out precise streams of existing, direct European funding for creative and cultural organisations, and an overview of future funding. Brexit presents major challenges for all these industries because of the uncertain nature of the future regulatory environment, and the over-riding concern during the inquiry was for a level playing field. This Report has been prepared on the assumption that the UK will cease to be a formal member of the European Union and, in doing so — after a transition period or not — will also cease formally to be a member of the Single Market and Customs Union. All these issues are, of course, still hotly contested. In compiling the Report, to inform us as to latest Government thinking, we sought access to the relevant sector analyses produced by the Department for Exiting the European Union. After a formal request, in December 2017, Committee Members — but not staff — were given access to the reports, but only for one hour, during which electronic devices were confiscated. Given the immense importance of Brexit, we found these arrangements highly unsatisfactory. On 21st December, these ‘Sector Reports’ were subsequently published by the Brexit Select Committee, but with one key omission: the Committee could not command a majority to publish the concluding ‘Sector Views’ sections of the Reports. This, too, is unsatisfactory.