Ukraine and the Netherlands will cooperate for the preservation of Ukraine’s cultural heritage and cultural development

On March 14, a meeting was held between the teams of the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine, headed by Oleksandr Tkachenko, and the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, chaired by State Secretary for Culture and Media Gunay Uslu. The parties discussed possible ways of cooperation between Ukraine and the Netherlands in the field of culture and preservation of Ukraine’s cultural heritage.

We would like to remind, at the end of December 2022, the Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Mark Rutte, announced a package of financial assistance to Ukraine in the amount of 2.5 billion euros for 2023. Among it, in particular, funds are provided for the preservation of cultural heritage, support of cultural institutions and development of the cultural sphere of Ukraine.

 “We are grateful to the Netherlands for their solidarity with the Ukrainian people. We highly appreciate your Government’s decision to define Ukraine as the focus country for international cultural cooperation and to support Ukrainian culture financially. The Ministry is ready to serve as a bridge for establishing cooperation between Ukrainian and Dutch cultural institutions,” Oleksandr Tkachenko, Minister of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine, said.

The Ukraine’s Minister invited the leadership of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Ukraine. The MCIP appreciates and counts on the active cooperation with the Netherlands in the field of protection, preservation and restoration of the cultural heritage of Ukraine, digitalization of the cultural sphere, as well as support for the activities of Ukrainian cultural institutions, artists of the cultural sphere and creative industries in Ukraine. Currently, Ukraine needs immediate protection, and in the future reconstruction of cultural objects and infrastructure. russian aggression has already led to the destruction of more than 1,322 cultural objects.

 During the meeting, support for Ukrainian culture through the implementation of joint art projects was also discussed. Together with the United Ukrainian Ballet, the issue of creating a modern production of the Ukrainian ballet “Forest Song” with the involvement of world-famous choreographers based on the work of the famous Ukrainian poetess Lesia Ukrainka is being worked out. The management of the “United Ukrainian Ballet” Foundation is interested in creating this performance. In particular, it is proposed to establish cooperation on this issue with the National Opera of Ukraine and the Dutch National Opera & Ballet. It is planned that the Government of the Netherlands will finance this project. Such a production can become interesting for many theaters of the world. In addition, the Ukrainian animated film “Mavka. Forest Song” will be shown in Dutch cinemas.

Oleksandr Tkachenko emphasized the importance of supporting the Ukrainian Cultural Foundation, the Ukrainian Book Institute, and the book publishing industry as a whole. It was about creating high-quality translations of Ukrainian authors into the Dutch language and publishing Dutch authors in the Ukrainian language.

 The parties discussed issues of cooperation in the context of digitalization of Ukrainian culture. The introduction of the State Register of Immovable Monuments of Ukraine and the Register of the Museum Fund of Ukraine will ensure the automation of all processes of recording information about cultural heritage, its condition, and cultural values. This will help to preserve and restore the Ukrainian cultural heritage, as well as make it possible to create mechanisms to prevent the illegal movement of cultural values stolen by russians.

Among the participants of the meeting from the Ukrainian side: Oleksandr Tkachenko, Minister of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine and his deputies Galyna GrygorenkoAnastasia BondarKateryna Chuyeva; representatives of the Embassy of Ukraine in the Kingdom of the Netherlands: Anatoly Solovei, Yuliya Malinovska.

 From the Dutch side: Gunay Uslu, State Secretary for Culture and Media of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; Dawi van de Weerd, Ambassador for International Cultural Cooperation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; Thymen Kouwenaar, Strategic policy officer for international cultural cooperation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Annemarie de Ruiter, Head of Unit Europe, Directorate international policy of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; Pieter van Koetsveld, Senior policy officer Media at the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; Jules van de Ven, coordinating spokesperson at the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

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