On 13 December 2017, the Estonian Parliament adopted the 2018 State Budget Act. Next year, pay rise for cultural workers and youth sports coaches is in store as well as increased number of artists’ and writers’ salaries. Many cultural and sports buildings will be under construction.
Valorisation of cultural workers and youth coaches
In 2018, the State Budget Act foresees increase in the cultural worker’s salary fund by 22 percent. For the first time, the cultural worker’s minimum salary will raise above the one thousand euro mark for workers with higher education or working in positions requiring higher education, amounting to 1 150 euros. Within three years, the minimum salary has been raised by 419 euros in total. By the year 2020, given that the same pace of salary increase will continue, the cultural worker’s average salary will be on par with the Estonian average. In 2014, the Parliament passed the document „The general principles of cultural policy until 2020“ (PDF) (PDF) which established the aims concerning average salaries.
Next year, at the proposal of the Ministry of Culture the salary fund of support personnel and cultural worker’s with higher education will be increased by 7.5 percent even if their gross salary already exceeds the minimum level.
Next year, the Ministry of Culture plans to increase the circle of salaried authors and artists by adding three recipients in both creative fields. The salaries ensure freelancers professional level remuneration and social security. The budget for salaried artists and authors is transferred from the Ministry of Culture to the artistic associations – Estonian Writer’s Union and Estonian Artists’ Association which select the recipients and make the payments. For the year 2018, the required budget is 202 402 euros which covers the needs of the current recipients and the additional six recipients.
The Ministry of Culture, similarly to valuing cultural workers, considers the work of youth coaches important. Coaches are the key personnel in the sports field and their work influences the lives of tens of thousands, with the results being felt also in other fields in addition to sports. For this reason, fair remuneration of coaches is important. The Ministry of Culture will increase the salary fund of youth coaches having the 5th professional category and above by 35.2 percent which means that in 2018 the minimum salary for coaches increases from 637 euros to 850 euros per month.
Support for international cultural and sporting events organisers
The Ministry of Culture will initiate the cultural and sporting events support programme for events organised in Estonia with international scope. The support measure offers state support to event organisers to ensure that major cultural and sporting events continue to take place in Estonia. The measure is designed to liven the economy, increase Estonia’s recognition and increase the state budget.
The cultural and sporting events organisers wishing to apply for support must have established themselves as organisers of international large-scale events. The measure will be implemented by and the state support evaluated by the assigned Estonian Ministry of Culture committee which will include representatives from Enterprise Estonia (EAS) and the Estonian Ministry of Finance.
By the end of 2017, the exact conditions of the support measure will be developed. For the year 2018, the intended budget is 2 million euros.
Institutions and investments
Next year, film as an important business card for Estonia and an art form with an international dimension will receive extended state funding. Support to the Estonian Film Institute will be increased by 350 000 euros. The support measure Film Estonia intended to boost foreign capital based film and serial production will be increased twofold to 2 million euros per year.
In 2018, the Arvo Pärt Centre will receive construction support amounting to 3.7 million euros. The centre will be completed for the Republic of Estonia’s centenary.
For many years since its founding the Tallinn City Theatre troupe and audience has felt the lack of a spacious hall. Construction will be supported through the state and Tallinn’s municipal budget. In 2018, the state budget includes 700 000 euros for the design of the building complex. Throughout three years, the city and the state will each provide support amounting to 10 million euros.
The state and city will also collaborate over renewing the Tallinn Song Festival Grounds’ arch’s boarding. Next year, the designated funds will amount to 330 000 euros. For the 150th anniversary song and dance festival, the arch will be renovated. The dance festival’s home – Kalev Stadium also awaits joint state and city financing.
The next three years will bring a long awaited major investment to the Kääriku Sports Centre which will be converted into a contemporary training centre. For the years 2018-2020, the government coalition has decided to commit close to 12 million euros for the conversion. Construction works will include reconstruction of the sports building including the medical block. Team buildings will be built, the sports hotel will be expanded, a ball game hall will be established and much more.
The Estonian Ministry of Culture, City of Pärnu and NGO Pärnu Rowing Club wish to jointly reconstruct the Pärnu Rääma Rowing Centre. The ministry plans on spending 718 000 euros for developing the rowing centre. In the upcoming months the rowing club will announce the architectural competition. Already next year, in 2018, the construction works will go ahead. The first reconstruction phase of the Rääma rowing centre foresees designing and constructing a new rowing centre with a unified architectural solution that will include training facilities and an eight seater rowing tank as well as renovation of the slipway building, construction of the necessary structures as well as moorings.