(Brussels) “To highlight the role of Europe’s cultural heritage in fostering a shared sense of history and identity” – this is the proposal put forward by the European Commission which has invited the European Parliament and Council to designate 2018 as the “European Year of Cultural Heritage”. Europe’s vast and diverse cultural heritage is “at the very heart of the collective memory and identity of European citizens. The EU’s rich national, regional and local diversity is a unique catalyst for exchanges between people of all ages, social backgrounds and cultures”. Furthermore, it plays a strong economic role in that it benefits tourism and related cultural sectors. According to the European Commission, the European Year will be an occasion to “highlight the importance of European culture”, and its conservation, promotion, and dissemination. The European Parliament and Council of Culture Ministers, which now have the final word, will be responsible for providing adequate funding to promote initiatives that can further stress the importance of the European Year.