Ottawa is getting ready to invest $125 million over five years for the Canadian arts by increasing existing budgets for domestic programs, expanding the eligible sectors that can receive money and by helping artists export their work internationally, Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly said Tuesday. Calling it a “strategy with teeth and money,” Joly told reporters the federal government decided to expand the sectors eligible for arts funding to include industries such as video gaming, design, virtual reality and fashion.

6/ Our artists are already shining all over the world, whether we think of Robert Lepage, Jean-Marc Vallée, Xavier Dolan, Denis Villeneuve, Drake or even Yannick Nézet Séguin. #CreativeCanada 10/ Today, we are highlighting the #GoC’s investment of $125M over 5 years to implement Canada’s first Creative Export Strategy.

This includes the launch of ‘Creative Export Canada’, a new funding program that will help creators stand out in the global market. #CreativeCanada pic.twitter.com/TeUsZvTGED “For the first time in our history, all these disciplines will be supported (financially),” Joly said at the announcement in Montreal.

The Liberals are reinvesting in sectors ignored by the former Conservative government under Stephen Harper, which cut funding for programs that exported Canadian art into foreign markets, Joly added. She said Harper’s cuts “annihilated” programs that supported artists touring overseas.

Included in the funding is $7 million a year for a new program called Creative Export Canada, which will help domestic artists find foreign buyers and audiences for their work. Most of the cash will increase the budgets of existing Heritage Department programs such as the Canada Arts Presentation Fund, the Canada Book Fund, the Canada Music Fund, the Canada Periodical Fund and Telefilm Canada. Read more from cbc.ca…

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