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Government announces visa-free touring plans for 19 EU countries

The plans may help some producers wanting to tour work

A ballet dancer

The government has stated 19 EU countries have now agreed to visa-free short-term touring.

Post-Brexit plans for touring (or lack thereof) had drawn withering criticism from across the arts sector, with the National stating it is unable to tour for a number of years due to the new costs involved, while Elton John and others have lambasted government inaction.

According to a statement from the government, 19 member states have now confirmed UK musicians and performers do not need visas or work permits for short-term tours, with Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Sweden all agreeing to the plans. There are reportedly ongoing conversations with other member states, which could see this number increase from 19.

The government has also set out plans for touring performers and support staff to come to the UK for up to 3 months without a visa.

It is unknown, at the moment, if other permits for equipment will also be waived under the new plans (and whether they cover performers and other creatives in the same way), with further details expected. The announcement does not define "short-term", and whether it is the same as the three months offered in the UK.

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