The Belgian EU presidency for Media programme
From January 1 to June 30, 2024, Belgium is, even more so than usual, the beating heart of the EU. This generates a lot of additional international attention and is an excellent opportunity to showcase the Belgian expertise. As presidency, we are not only responsible for maintaining the continuity of the EU agenda and ensuring good cooperation between the member states, while also having the chance to emphasize our own priorities.
The media priorities during the Belgian presidency are:
- Completing the European Media Freedom Act.
- Facilitating knowledge exchange on digital transformation of media and media innovation.
- Promoting support for online content creators and influencers.
What is Flanders’ role in the Belgian EU presidency Media programme? Read all about it.
The Culture Council
EU ministers responsible for Audiovisual Affairs and Media come together during the Culture Council. An important dossier that will be addressed here is the European Media Freedom Act (EMFA). Media freedom and pluralism are essential for democracy and are therefore fundamental values of the EU. To protect these values and counteract the increasing politicization of the media in some member states, the European Commission put forward a proposal for EMFA in 2022. Flanders will lead the team of the Belgian Presidency with the aim of finalizing the work on this file.
In addition to continuing the ongoing European agenda, as the chair, we will also propose council conclusions on 'supporting influencers and online content creators'. Unlike legislation, council conclusions are not legally binding, but they represent the position of the member states on a specific theme. Therefore, following debates among the member states, the Council takes a political stance on a subject or issue.
The subject of 'supporting influencers and online content creators' is a theme on which Flanders has already made significant strides with the launch of the influencerFAQ. Today, influencers and online content creators are still primarily viewed from an economic and commercial standpoint, while their influence on our society and specifically on young people extends much further. By placing this theme on the European agenda, the Belgian presidency aims to draw attention to this broader impact and complement existing European regulations on influencer marketing.
Content with conscience. Conference on the support of Influencers and Online Content Creators – February 27, 2024
To support the work in the Culture Council and on the council conclusions, the Belgian presidency organises a conference in Brussels on influencers and online content creators on February 27. With a diverse program featuring engaging speakers and panels, experts and policymakers will have the opportunity to fully immerse themselves in this theme.
The event is centred around two questions: What is the role of influencers and online content creators in the media landscape, and what kind of support do they need? Not only will experts shed their light on this, but influencers from various EU member states will have the chance to share their experiences and needs as well.
Media Innovation Xchange. Conference on Digital Transformation and Media Innovation – March 13 to 14, 2024
The media sector is in a constant state of flux, with many technological advances emerging at a rapid pace, bringing forth significant opportunities as well as unprecedented challenges. On March 13 and 14, we delve deeper into this during the Media Innovation Xchange conference in Brussels. Policymakers and stakeholders from both Belgium and other EU member states will have the opportunity to exchange knowledge and expertise, gain inspiration, and establish international contacts.
The aim of the event is, together with the present experts and policymakers, to explore and concretize the opportunities and challenges surrounding digital transformation and innovation in the media sector. As the Belgian presidency, we aspire to strengthen the European media sector in terms of innovation and digitalization and contribute to future European media policy and programs.