Budget 2013 Analysis

Budget Day update from the NCFA
8th December 2012
December 2012 Newsletter
18th December 2012


Department of Arts Heritage & the Gaeltacht Combined Totals
2012 (€m)
Combined Totals
2013 (€m)
Regional Museums, Galleries & Cultural Centres 4.1 3.9 -5%
Irish Museum of Modern Art, Chester Beatty Library,
National Concert Hall, Crawford Gallery
11.9 11.2 -6%
National Archives, National Archives Advisory Council 1.4 1.4 0%
National Museum of Ireland 12.5 11.9 -5%
National Library of Ireland 7.1 6.7 -6%
National Gallery 8.5 8.0 -6%
Irish Film Board 15.7 14.3 -9%
Arts Council / An Comhairle Ealaíon 63.2 59.9 -5%
EU Presidency Cultural Programme 1.0 1.7 n/a
Culture Ireland 3.6 3.1 -14%


  • Average 5% cut across NCIs
  • Section 481 extended to 2020
  • EU Presidency Cultural Programme:
  • €2.7 million has been allocated to the D/AHG across two years, of which €1m was already spent in 2012. €800K has been allocated to the Arts Council / An Comhairle Ealaíon for 2013, thereby decreasing the core Grant-in-Aid to €59.97m.
  • Culture Ireland received €1.55m for the EU Cultural programme across 2012 and 2013
  • Combined Totals = Capital and Current Expenditure. 

We have gathered further detail on the breakdown of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Budget 2013 that we thought valuable to share with you. The table below shows the cuts made by. (You may need to download images in order to see the table.)

As we reflect on the budget and its implications, probably the best thing that can be said about it is that the Department has succeeded in arresting the rate of decline, lessening the intense impact of the body-blow of cuts that have been experienced over the last few years.

But are we really at the stage of welcoming cuts?

The National Cultural Institutions, already under the scalpel from the Public Service Reform plans, will be subject to an average of 5% cut, despite the Government’s commitment to their central role in our cultural landscape. Interestingly the National Archives have received no cuts to their general expenses.

Considered cumulatively, the Arts Council’s core funding has dropped by over 30% since 2008 from €85 million to €59 million. The effect of this huge reduction in support has been felt by our members nationwide with company closures, job losses, reduced programmes, diminished activity and supports.

Arts Council annual funding decisions are due in early January. One can only hope for a restrained 4% cut across the board being applied by the Council.

The focus now moves to Local Authorities’ funding for the arts. A discretionary spend, we already have seen instances where a budget allocation for the arts has been challenged and even withdrawn (though reinstated after appeal and direct political intervention).

The 5.6% cut to the Dept of Environment, Community and Local Government and the fact that local authorities are aware of the existence of the pot of EU Cultural Programme money may adversely affect the funding of local and community arts, including festivals. However, let’s hope local authorities recognise the value of the arts to the success of local initiatives in support of The Gathering next year, as well as the positive impact the arts has on their communities in general.

We will continue to keep in touch with you as more information becomes available. Keep an eye on our facebook and twitter as always for most up-to-date news. Please do share any other information or funding news you have with us.

Help the NCFA continue to advocate for the arts in Ireland.