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Arts council in ever greater demand

The Arts Council of Switzerland - Pro Helvetia - supported nearly 2,000 cultural projects and events in 1999, its 60th anniversary year. In its annual report it says over SFr22 million were distributed to promote the arts.

More applications for help were received than the previous year - 3,676, an increase of 146. Fifty-four per cent of them were approved totally or in part, 40 per cent for projects in Switzerland with the remainder going abroad.

Music was the single biggest beneficiary, getting subsidies amounting to SFr3 million, nearly SFr250,000 more than in 1998. But both dance and the visual arts saw a drop in their share of the money distributed.

For the first time, publishers were among the recipients. Three of them each received SFr100,000.

As well as promoting the arts and culture, Pro Helvetia supports cultural exchanges between Switzerland’s linguistic regions and cultural dialogue between Switzerland and abroad.

Its president, Yvette Jäggi, says in the report that the idea of Pro Helvetia, its objectives and duties remain the same. But she added that bearing in mind limited means and a constantly rising volume of work, there would be further discussion this year of proposed structural changes.

swissinfo with agencies

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