Brexit continues to rumble along boringly with no happy solution in sight and we're sure that you are fed up with the whole thing.
Our main concern here at Viva La Visa is how any changes will affect artists from the EU wanting to come and work in the UK and those from the UK wanting to work in Europe, with particular focus on artists travelling for short periods of time (less than 3 months).
The position up to now has not been clear and it isn't really that much clearer as the supposed deadline looms.
However there has been some discussion in and around parliament which gives some pointers as to how things might be…
For EU artists coming to the UK
If a deal is reached before March 29th then, according to Immigration Minister Caroline Noakes speaking in Parliament on Feb 13th, she said that during the transition period until Dec 2020, nothing will change.
If the UK leaves with 'No Deal' then nothing changes for visits of up to 3 months. This will apply until the new skills based immigration system comes in in 2021.
For UK artists going to the EU
It would be hoped that if the UK allows EU performers in for short tours, then this would be reciprocated. Robin Walker, Under-Secretary of State for departing the EU said in answer to a parliamentary question on Feb 7th that in the event of no-deal, “visa-free travel only applies for tourists and business travels. Musicians will need to check individual EU member state immigration rules for more info regarding work visits”.
Historically the EU has been pretty relaxed about short tours there and not bothered about work permits for visits of less than a month, apart from France.
The statement of Feb 13th is the most recent and seems to suggest that nothing much will change in the short term irrespective of what happens with Brexit.
What is clear though is that Parliament, despite protestations to the contrary has either no interest in or understanding of how it all works. The Department for Culture, Media and Sport said they were 'working closely with the music industry to understand potential impacts and opportunities of EU exit for the sector', so we will wait with impatience to see how much the music industry has been considered in all of this.
We'll keep you posted!