Following a call for Expressions of Interest for towns and regions in Malta and Gozo to hold the ECoC in 2031, the Valletta Cultural Agency received applications from Birgu which forms part of the South Eastern Region and from Victoria which forms part of the Gozitan Region.
The seminar is intended to give the candidate cities for Malta’s ECoC 2031 the opportunity to discuss key aspects of the initiative and the bidding process with experts in their fields from past and future ECoCs.
The Minister for National Heritage, the Arts and Local Government José Herrera, Valletta Cultural Agency Chairman Jason Micallef, Valletta Cultural Agency CEO Catherine Tabone, Birgu and Victoria mayors, the Regional Presidents concerned, representatives of past and future EcoCs and several other distinct members from Matera in Italy, Plovdiv in Bulgaria, Kaunas in Lithuania, and Nova Gorica from Slovenia, were all present for this seminar.
The Minister for National Heritage, the Arts and Local Government José Herrera said that the aim of a European Capital of Culture is to highlight the richness and diversity of cultures in Europe. It therefore aims to celebrate the cultural features Europeans share and increases the Europeans’ sense of belonging to a common cultural area.
During this seminar the Valletta 2018 experience was also discussed. Valletta Cultural Agency Chairman, Jason Micallef said that Valletta 2018 European Capital of Culture, put Malta and its capital on the map. Furthermore, it also boosted tourism and €678 million was generated in the Maltese economy. Jason Micallef also said that the Valletta 2018 legacy continues to be felt and that Malta must remain committed to strengthening its artistic and cultural infrastructure for the country to continue to be a cultural destination.
Valletta Cultural Agency CEO, Catherine Tabone said that the ECoC initiative helps to regenerate cities, raise their international profiles, enhance their image, breathe new life and boost tourism.