Through the EEA Agreement, Norway takes part in EU's single framework programme for cultural co-operation. The EEA Agreement also provides the regulatory framework for the audio-visual sector.
In the field of cultural co-operation, the activities of the Union are concentrated in a single framework programme, Culture 2000. This is a five-year programme that started in 2000 and has a budget of 167 MEURO. Norway takes part in the programme under the EEA Agreement, just as we took part in the previous programmes Kaleidoscope for artistic and cultural creation, Ariane for books and reading, including translation, and Rafaël for cultural heritage. The new framework programme covers all the activities of the old programmes. Information on the Culture 2000 programme can be found on the DG Education and Culture website. A Norwegian national agency for the programme has been established at Norsk Kulturråd.
Norway is also taking part in the European City of Culture and European Cultural Month projects. For the year 2000 Bergen was designated a European City of Culture together with eight other European cities.
Various activities are also going on in the audiovisual field. The Media II programme is in its last year, and a new programme, Media Plus, is under discussion. The Media II programme focuses on three priority areas: training, the development of production projects and the transnational distribution of European films and TV programmes.
The EEA Agreement also provides the regulatory framework for the audiovisual sector. The Television without Frontiers Directive has been implemented in Norway, and within the EFTA/EEA structure we participate in the discussions on and follow-up of the Green Paper on Convergence of the Telecommunications, Media and Information Technology Sectors, and the Implications for Regulation. Information on the EFTA/EEA structure can be found on the EFTA Secretariat's website.