With creative industries all over the world facing financial challenges in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the UAE government is providing relief to its local creative communities under the National Creative Relief Program, launched by the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development. The initiative was first launched in May 2020 and was introduced to provide financial help to small businesses and freelancers whose income would have been impacted negatively due to how the pandemic has affected the economy.
When it first launched, the Ministry saw that the initiative had helped around 50 people in 37 different organizations, and have launched the second phase of the program which offers larger amounts to people and businesses that are struggling.
UAE residents, Emiratis and performing arts, media, design and cultural heritage companies who have less than 10 employees, can apply on the Ministry’s website for the opportunity to get anything between AED15,000 to AED75,000 to help keep their business afloat.
Creative freelancers and companies ... Submit your application through our website from 1st-14th July for a chance to receive a financial grant from the National Creative Relief Programhttps://t.co/TKlUzNOcV6 pic.twitter.com/xKlw3gZ4jH— وزارة الثقافة وتنمية المعرفة (@mckduae) July 8, 2020
Statistics have shown that smaller businesses within the creative sector have benefited the most from the grant and are often the most vulnerable to financial hardship.
HE Noura Al Kaabi, UAE Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development said in a statement, “We increased the financial value of the grant to a maximum of AED 75,000 to maintain the sustainability of these companies, and ensure their growth and development in the creative market to drive the process of cultural development and knowledge sharing that comes at the forefront of the UAE’s development pillars.”
The Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development is accepting applications until Tuesday 14th July and are reviewed by a specific committee that assess the financial situation of the company or individual and their income prior to the pandemic. “The creative sector is the most resilient and powerful in the region, thanks to the close co-operation between different institutions that enrich the cultural scene in the country and ensure the competitiveness of the creative economy in the UAE. Many creative communities have provided support programs and economic incentives to encourage entrepreneurs and creatives to overcome the challenges posed by the Covid-19 crisis,” said Al Kaabi.