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COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level responses

Eurofound's COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the crisis, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for case NL-2021-1/1686 – measures in Netherlands

Measures for the second package for the cultural and creative sector

Maatregelen tweede specifieke pakket voor de culturele en creatieve sector

Country Netherlands , applies nationwide
Time period Open ended, started on 01 January 2021
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Promoting the economic, labour market and social recovery
– Support for spending, stimulus packages
Author Amber van der Graaf (Panteia) and Eurofound
Case created 09 January 2021 (updated 14 January 2021)

Background information

The cultural and creative sectors have been especially badly hit due to the COVID-19 crisis. The revenue in the cultural and recreational sector has dropped with 37.4% in the second quarter of 2020. In response, the government will introduce a second support package for the cultural and creative sector during the first half of 2021. The people working in this sector are often (solo) self-employed which makes them more vulnerable. This support package will focus on creators and artists, and it is a continuation of the first support package. There will be an extra budget for freelance theatre producers as well.

Content of measure

The second investment package means that €1,62 billion will be made available for the cultural and creative sector. Of this amount, € 340 million will be made available for 2020 and a further €414 million for 2021 to make sure creators and artists can continue to work. Specifically the following activities will be supported by this extra financial injection:

  • €202.75 million will serve as an extension of the previous support package until the first half of 2021.
  • €100 million for institutions and festivals in the basic cultural infrastructure (known as the BIS) for 2021-2024.
  • €20 million for a contribution to the national restauration fund (Nationaal Restauratiefonds) for the monument loans (OML).
  • €15 million for the Culture and Entrepreneurship Foundation (Cultuur+Ondernemen) to provide loans to entrepreneurs in this sector.
  • €49,76 million for creators through grants from six government-owned culture funds, grants for public broadcast (NPO) productions and schooling for self-employed people.
  • €10 million for the cultural organisations “Kickstart Cultuurfonds”, a cultural fund, and €0.4 million for “Nationaal Theaterweekend”, a theatre organisation, both are supporting the cultural and creative sector.
  • €20 million for private museums and important collections.
  • €15 million for floating cultural heritage sites (Bruine Vloot).
  • €10 million to stimulate film productions.
  • €5 million for field labs to do research on the resilience of this sector. *€150 million to support the cultural infrastructure.
  • €11 million for institutions that had been granted financial support but could not receive it because of budget limits.
  • €40 million extra will be available for independent theatre producers for the performing arts.

Use of measure

There is no information available on this yet.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Particular professions
Sector specific set of companies
Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Social partners jointly
Other social actors (e.g. NGOs)
Local / regional government
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Unknown Negotiated
Form Not applicable Consultation through tripartite or bipartite social dialogue bodies

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Social partners jointly
  • Main level of involvement: Sectoral or branch level


The Ministry of Education, Culture and Science requested the involvement of the social partners for advice and input when developing the measures. For instance, the Ministry requested advice from the Culture Council (Raad van Cultuur) on funding youth performing arts groups. Furthermore, Fund for Performing Arts was asked to further develop the measures for the support package for the performing arts sector. The sectoral social partners (consisting mainly of several large foundations and funds) are closely involved because they will implement the financial support by providing grants and financial support to end beneficiaries. Furthermore, the social partners are involved in distributing the financial support to the people and institutions working in the cultural and creative sector. This social dialogue was on a national scale.

Views and reactions

The social partners are supportive about the measure and appear glad that they were involved in the negotiations. However, the Association of Museums (Museumvereniging), while supportive, has some doubts that the money will actually reach those who need it. The Cultural Council has also received worried reactions from people working in the sector, and has expressed the hope that local governments will not use the funds to pay for the delayed payments in rent by cultural and art institutions.

Sectors and occupations

    • Economic area Sector (NACE level 2)
      R - Arts, Entertainment And Recreation R90 Creative, arts and entertainment activities
      R91 Libraries, archives, museums and other cultural activities

This case is not occupation-specific.


  • 16 November 2020: Kamerbrief: Uitwerking maatregelen tweede specifieke pakket voor de culturele en creatieve sector (


Eurofound (2021), Measures for the second package for the cultural and creative sector, case NL-2021-1/1686 (measures in Netherlands), COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,

Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process. All information is preliminary and subject to change.