During the first six months of this year ten cultural projects have been carried out in ten different countries, including the US, Russia, India and Ireland, as part of a programme of Cultural Diplomacy by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion.
In the Greek capital Athens, the Maltese orchestra-choir Capella Diacono presented a programme of sacred music at the Catholic Cathedral and the Megaron Theatre.
This concert was one of ten cultural initiatives carried out so far this year, with the assistance of the Cultural Diplomacy fund within the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion.
The Assistant Director of the Cultural Diplomacy Section, Dr Sharon Scicluna, explained that these cultural programmes include exchanges of ideas, values, traditions and cultural aspects which contribute towards strengthening of relationships and improvement of socio-cultural cooperation between peoples.
Dr Scicluna explained that the fund was set up in 2012, and 98 cultural programmes have been carried out over a seven-year span. The first six months included concerts, art and photography exhibitions and theatrical productions in Vienna, Paris, Washington, Rome, Ramallah and India.
“We have continuous contact with Maltese Embassies abroad, and I feel they are the focus and the most important element,which makes a difference from other projects carried out by other entities.”
Minister Carmelo Abela said his Ministry does its utmost to improve contacts at cultural level, and offers its support through Maltese Embassies.
“We also have a number of previously signed agreements and can arrange cultural activities, as very often these incorporate also activities relating to youths, sport, the educational aspect, but these are a way by which, through cultural diplomacy, we get peoples closer to each other, thus strengthening bilateral realtions between Malta and the respective countries.”
Minister Abela added that through cultural diplomacy one communicates with other peoples with a common language, and this encourages peace and stability worldwide.