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Commission report on the results obtained under the Media II Programme (1996-2000) from 1.1.96-30.6.98. COM (99) 91 final, 16 March 1999

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COMMISSION OF THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES Brussels, 16.03.1999 COM(1999) 91 final lt. PREAMBLE : ECONOMIC AND INSTITUTIONAL CONTEXT The aim of the MEDIA II programme ( 1996-2000), which came into effect in January 1996, is to strengthen the competitiveness of the European audiovisual industry through a series of incentives covering the training of professionals, the development of production companies and projects, and the distribution of cinematographic works and audiovisual programmes. It has taken over from the MEDIA I Programme (1991-1995), which helped the sector fall into line with the future single audiovisual market in Europe. MEDIA II is based on two 1995 Council Decisions introducing: - a programme encouraging the development and distribution of European audiovisual works based on Article 130 of the EEC Treaty (MEDIA II- Development and Distribution), with an indicative budget of ECU 265 million over five years; 1 - a programme for training professionals in the audiovisual sector based on Article 127 of the EEC Treaty (MEDIA II- Training), with a target budget ofECU 45 million over five years.2 These two decisions stipulate that after two years and six months of implementation of the programme and within the six months that follow this period, the Commission shall present to the European Parliament, the Council and the Economic and Social Committee an evaluation report on the results obtained, accompanied, if need be, by any adjustment to the programme) This report is also part of the general review of the EU's audiovisual policy started in 1997. A survey on future audiovisual markets,4 carried out on behalf of the Commission, estimated that the industry's overall income would increase by 70% by 2005 in the European Union. This strong growth in the audiovisual market represents a major opportunity and challenge, both for the industries concerned and for society as a whole. In this sector where European industry still shows a substantial deficit

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