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The head of the national museum: We have a deficit of 30 million

the Concern for the economy of the recently re-opened national museum in Stockholm will be clear in a letter that the DN has taken part of, as superintendent last week sent to the government. Susanna Pettersson presents the calculations that the museum made on the actual cost of maintaining the free admission, as well as the consequences for the business.

She writes that the museum ”with all the clarity needs to convey is that the more visitors we get, the more we have to invest in expenses which guarantees the volume, the staff and the audience's safety, i.e. increase the number of security guards, hosts, cleaning, preservation, and all the other things that make the museum visit an experience”.

a meeting between representatives of the ministry of culture and the national museum on Tuesday, " says Pettersson.

– This is a very special situation. We are of course delighted to receive so many visitors, and we do everything we can to resolve it. At the same time we have the problem that the cost for the us is increasing, " she says.

peripheral costs that you get have huge knock-on effect for the department's economy. In the letter to the government presents Susanna Pettersson, therefore, two possible scenarios to consider: either get the museum to start charging from the beginning of april or so remains free entrance at the same time that the national museum must be compensated with sek 60 million annually.

of compensation are, however, based on the forecast that the museum took up before återöppningen, that emanated from that you get the 800,000 visits per year, half of which in so cases, pay admission to some temporary exhibitions. The fact of the matter is that the pressure at the national museum have been considerably higher than this since the opening on 13 October 2018.

Only until the end of the year was just over 310.000 visits to the museum. If visitors would stream to the same rate as in the autumn will be 2019 to land on close to 1.8 million visitors, writes Susanna Pettersson in the letter. And the compensation that you previously received notice of the would apply for the full-year 2019 – 15 million – is not enough by a long shot.

"The previously decided level for The free entrékompensation thus becomes more than sek 8 per visit, which does not even cover a fraction of the cost of the operation, such as increased fees, cleaning köbildningshantering outside the building, supplies, wear and tear both on the objects and premises, increased staff costs in the front and security"' writes Pettersson.

the museum's costs for each visit, in fact, is 60 sek per visit.

" We have worked with the budget now and really checked out all the possible numbers. However, the deficit is 30 million. And it is the sum we have to work with for this year, " says Susanna Pettersson.

" Yes, exactly. But we expect, it is an ongoing process and we will take up the matter in budgetunderlaget. I am sure that we will find a good solution. It is, of course, the most important thing.

– It is obvious that we shall be able to ensure that the business can continue and that the level of ambition can be as high as possible, but it of course requires work from us. Then we must also be able to define the cost level that is reasonable.

– It is obvious that we must save money. I don't want to speculate on what decisions will be taken, but we have started discussions and they have been very good so far. Solution oriented.

the funding for free admission reform in the past has been close to 80 million per year. However, when the budget from the M and the KD was voted through in parliament in the fall, it looked like that the aid should be abolished completely for 2019. After adjustments, however, had the state museums of three months to abolish the free entrance.

Weeks, then came a new turn of events. Under the new agreement between S, MP, C and L), the re-introduction of free admission at state museums. Culture and demokratiminister Amanda Lind (MP) said: when DN interviewed her in January, that the plan is that the free entrance in state museums to be re-instated ”in the summer”.

According to Susanna Pettersson, however, it is not an option for the museum to eventually start charging for entry.

"It is not possible to speculate on," she says.

" Yes, it is something we can not compromise on, either content or quality.

Read more: ”A mockery of all serious cultural leadership”

Read more: Free admission to state museums – again

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