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Decree Law No. 103/2017

Publication: Republic Diary No. 163/2017, Series I of 2017-08-24
  • Issuer: Culture
  • Diploma Type: Decree Law
  • Number: 103/2017
  • Pages: 5038 - 5044

Summary in plain english

What is it?

This decree-law defines new rules for awarding grants to the arts.

Grants are given in cash and allocated by the State, through the General Directorate of Arts (DGARTES). Entities that receive the support do not have to return the money to the State.

What will change? Support can be allocated to more entities

Institutions that are located in Portugal and work in the following areas can be funded:

  • visual arts
  • performing arts
  • intersection of artistic disciplines such as:
    • architecture
    • visual arts
    • design
    • photography
    • new media
    • contemporary circus
    • street arts
    • dance
    • music
    • Theater.

The following activities are eligible for funding:

  • creation
  • programming
  • national circulation
  • internationalization
  • audience development
  • editing
  • research
  • training.

The following entities are not eligible for funding:

  • private foundations or public foundations under private law that receive other types of continued funding provided by the culture budget
  • associations entirely made up of public entities
  • companies in the corporate public sector.
There are now only three types of support programmes

Support programmes used to be divided into 4 types and 13 categories. Now there are only 3 types:

  • sustained support
  • project support
  • partnership support.
  1. Sustained support programme

    This is aimed at organizations with at least 4 years of continuous professional activity, to support its stability and strengthening.

    The programme has two options:
    • for 2 years
    • for 4 years.

    It includes the funding of indispensable technical and human resources. Entities that collaborate with municipalities will benefit from special conditions.

  2. Project support programme

    This is aimed at entities that want to carry out activities for a year. It aims to stimulate and renew the national artistic offering.

    There is also complementary support for projects already approved under other national and international funding programmes or whose viability depends on a low-value grant.

  3. Partnership support programme

    This allows the Culture Ministry, through DGARTES, to join other public and private financing bodies to launch other grants.

In exceptional situations, extraordinary support may also be given to activities or projects of relevant cultural interest and proven public interest.

The support programmes to be launched will be announced at the end of the previous year

By 30 November the General Directorate of Arts (DGARTES) announces what support programmes it will launch the following year, on what dates, and for what areas and activities.

The programmes are based on a multiannual strategic plan, setting out the main strategic lines for supporting the arts. The plan must be reviewed at least every 4 years.

The Minister of Culture, based on a proposal from DGARTES, defines this plan.

Support for local authorities is now attributed differently

The sustained support programme gives preference to cultural agents who establish an effective commitment to municipalities within the framework of a local development strategy.

In the partnership programme, DGARTES collaborates with municipalities to create conditions for cultural activities that foster social and territorial cohesion.

There is a simplified procedure for low-value or complementary support

Most grants will continue to be awarded through tenders. However, there are exceptions.

Applicants for sustained support must answer a call for tender.

For partnership programmes, it is also possible to get support through protocols.

There is now a simplified procedure for allocating:

  • low-value grants
  • complementary support to activities included in international funding programmes.
Monitoring and evaluation of grants are reinforced

The new rules reinforce:

  • mechanisms for monitoring and evaluating financial support contracts
  • the obligations of the entities benefiting from the support
  • penalties for entities that do not comply with the rules.
The Arts Desk is created

This digital platform will centralize and provide information on the various available grants.

Call for tender announcements will be published in Diário da República and in the Arts Desk.

What are its benefits?

This decree-law aims to adapt the rules for granting support to the way the sector is evolving, in order to:

  • encourage the creation, production and circulation of arts
  • encourage the diversity of disciplinary areas and fields of activity
  • promote the articulation of art with other sectors
  • promote access to art as a means of correcting territorial inequalities and fostering human, social, economic and cultural development.
When does it come into effect?

This decree-law comes into effect the day after being published.

Original Version


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Legislative consolidation integrates the various amendments and rectifications made into an original legal diploma in order to make its consultation more accessible to the citizen.