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Culture secretary Oliver Dowden told music industry representatives in a meeting yesterday, 20 January, that the Government would offer financial assistance to touring artists to help cover increased costs, such as work permits, resulting from the controversial post-Brexit EU touring regulations.

On the same day in Parliament, the parliamentary under-secretary of state for culture, media and sport Baroness Barran said the Government remained willing to discuss with the EU a revision to the current deal but it is currently discussing the issue on a “bilateral basis” with individual EU member states.

In yesterday’s meeting Dowden suggested UK artists lobby the EU to revise the regulations that many in the music industry believe make it unviable to tour continental Europe.

The meeting followed a letter, signed by more than 100 musicians and music industry figures, including Sir Elton John and Ed Sheeran, to the Government accusing it of “shamefully failing” the country’s performers with its Brexit deal.

It follows a number of petitions, including one set up by live music camera director Tim Brennan that has been signed by more than 275,000 people, pressing the Government to address the issue.

As previously reported, the prime minister has agreed to meet with MPs to discuss a revised reciprocal agreement with the EU following calls from the music and events industry for Government to negotiate improved post-Brexit regulations for touring musicians and crew on the continent.

Previously, EU’s Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said the UK had lacked “ambition” in its negotiations on the issue: “I very much regretted that the British didn’t have more ambition for people’s mobility. From last March, we made fairly ambitious proposals in terms of mobility, including for specific categories such as journalists, performers, musicians and others. But you need to be two to make a deal.”

Following the meeting between music industry representatives and Dowden, UK Music CEO Jamie Njoku-Goodwin said the UK music industry was not interested in playing a blame game: “We just want to reach a solution that enables us to continue delivering the positive benefits for the UK that we always have done. So it was welcome to hear the Government’s commitment to working to reach a solution, but we will continue to press for action that resolves the challenges our industry is facing from Brexit.

“With the fishing industry, the Government has shown a willingness to help key national industries adjust to new export requirements. As a £5.8 billion industry that supports 200,00 jobs and generates £2.9 billion in exports, the music industry must also be supported through these challenges.”