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The Hon Peter Garrett AM MP
Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts

Towards a creative Australia

Media release
22 April 2009
PG/257

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Today’s response to the Australia 2020 Summit highlights the Australian Government’s recognition of the critical importance of the arts to our identity, community and economy.

Minister for the Arts Peter Garrett said the Australian Government will tackle many of the core themes addressed by the Creative Stream at the Australia 2020 Summit, including arts education, funding support, public access to arts and culture, and the importance of Indigenous culture.

“Fostering creative enterprise is not just essential to supporting a vibrant arts sector, but it also contributes significantly to building an innovative economy and celebrating our unique identity. The Government’s response addresses a number of the key themes developed by participants and commits us to consider further a range of other ideas,” Mr Garrett said.

“The Government will support a dedicated, commercial-free ABC digital children’s channel which will provide children with access to quality, child-appropriate content to support their development.

“Recognising the critical importance of Indigenous culture to Australia’s identity, the Australian Government will also take the first steps towards an Indigenous Cultural Education and Knowledge Centre as a place for celebrating Indigenous culture and as a source of information, advice and research.”

Additionally, the Government has already delivered on a number of ideas generated by the Creative Australia stream, where the critical importance of increasing the opportunity for connection to the arts was identified.

“As I announced last week, the Government has secured the agreement of all state and territory education ministers to ensure arts education is included in the national curriculum.

“Further, we have already committed to an Artists-in-Residence schools program, which will bring arts practitioners into our primary, secondary and tertiary schools to teach students and teachers about contemporary arts practice.

“I have also convened the Creative Australia Advisory Group, which includes Creative Stream co-chairs Cate Blanchett and Julianne Schultz, to discuss and develop ideas around a national cultural policy, private sector support for the arts and support arrangements for artists.”

The Australian Government’s response to the 2020 Australia summit can be found at www.australia2020.gov.au 

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