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‘False claims’ made by ministers refusing to rescue visa-free music tours of EU, lawyers say

Lawyers have recognized 5 false claims made by ministers for refusing to strike a deal to rescue visa-free touring of the EU, leaving performers with crippling new prices and crimson tape.

As The Independent revealed, regardless of Boris Johnson’s vow to “fix” the disaster – triggered by his Brexit deal – no talks have taken place and artists have merely been promised recommendation on the daunting obstacles they face.

Now a authorized opinion obtained by the Incorporated Society of Musicians (ISM) has torn aside the explanations given for failing to safe a visa waiver settlement (VWA) with Brussels.

The organisation additionally says the EU has no fewer than 28 such offers in place – which suggests performers in nations together with Colombia, the UAE and Tonga can tour extra simply than UK artists.

“Despite what MPs have been told by ministers, the latest legal advice has shown that it is entirely possible for the government to create an agreement,” stated Deborah Annetts, the ISM’s chief government.

“With the music sector now looking beyond coronavirus, it is still virtually impossible for many creative professionals to work in Europe on a short term or freelance basis.”

The authorities claims dismissed by a QC are:

* That an settlement would require the Brexit commerce deal to be renegotiated – when a “short supplementing agreement” might be added.

* That a VWA could be incompatible with “taking back control” of borders – when it might exempt a restricted quantity of professions solely.

* That it might “not bind EU member states” to waive visas – when it might be legally binding as soon as ratified, requiring approval by the EU Council.

* That it might cover solely “ad hoc performances” – when that’s the authorized time period used by the EU to refer to artists finishing up a full tour.

* That it might “not cover work permits” – which, whereas right, obscures that member states would then agree work allow guidelines, if any.

Ms Annetts described the authorized opinion as “extremely troubling”, including: “It simply requires the political will to deliver on the prime minister’s commitment to sort this mess out.”

It has been issued as Oliver Dowden the tradition secretary, prepares to give proof on the controversy to the Commons tradition committee on Thursday.

He angered organisations representing inventive artists when he stated it was up to them to use their lobbying energy to resolve the disaster, fairly than the federal government’s accountability.

The Musicians’ Union, One Dance UK, Equity, BECTU, Fashion Roundtable, Society of London Theatre, the Association of British Orchestras are amongst our bodies calling for a visa-waiver scheme.

It would permit short-term visits on a reciprocal foundation, typically which means 90 out of any 180 days – the EU proposal the UK rejected because the Brexit talks reached their climax final year.

On 24 March, the prime minister informed MPs: “We must fix this. We are working flat out, bilaterally, with each individual government.”

But the division for digital, tradition, media and sport (DCMS) has not disputed that no talks have taken place – or that no strategy has been made to Brussels, about visa guidelines.

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