CISAC VP Yvonne Chaka Chaka rallies support for private copying Directive at implementation seminar in Abidjan

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Yvonne Chaka Chaka with Françoise Remarck, Minister of Culture and Francophonie of Côte d'Ivoire (5th from right)

The initiative of the West African economic block UEMOA (West African Economic Monetary Union) to introduce private copying levies for creators across the region has moved into a new phase, with CISAC taking the lead at an implementation training seminar in Abidjan.

CISAC Vice-President and singer-songwriter Yvonne Chaka Chaka joined government officials, enforcement agencies and other parties involved in the implementation of the private copying Directive. She thanked UEMOA for its leadership in supporting creators and encouraged further rapid progress in order to complete the process.

Yvonne Chaka Chaka speaking at the UEMOA Private Copying

In September 2023, the Council of Ministers of the eight UEMOA member states  unanimously adopted a new Regional Directive harmonising rules on private copying. CISAC has played a key role advising on this legislation, which promises  increased revenues to creators and creative industries.  Only two countries in the 8-member UEMOA -  Burkina Faso and Côte d’Ivoire -  currently have a functional private copying scheme.

In a key note address to the seminar on 5th February,the CISAC’s Vice President paid tribute to the regional community for helping reward creators with a new remuneration stream. 

“I really want to congratulate you and the UEMOA commission for enabling the adoption of the Directive on private copying. The strategy which has been elaborated during the seminar will be instrumental to make sure creators, in the next two years, get more revenues and realize even more the potential of their creativity.”

“We need to put in place and enforce policies which protect creators. They are part of a value chain which contributes to the socioeconomic development of our countries - in Côte d'Ivoire and in Africa.”

Chaka Chaka called for the Directive to be implemented as a “fast track” priority in each of the members states. This involves technical cooperation between the relevant parties including CMOs, hardware and device makers, policy makers and enforcement agencies. Training is needed to prepare customs officials. An education programme is needed, supported by government, to ensure there is public understanding of the benefits of the private copying system.

CISAC has played a key role providing legal and operational guidance around the new Directive. Chaka Chaka said the creators in Africa depend on efficient and well-managed revenue streams so that those who use works, particularly the big commercial users, are obliged to pay royalties to creators. This is the mission of the collective management system which CISAC oversees internationally.

“In that context, this seminar today is a really important milestone for establishing and extending effective new revenue streams for creators in Africa”, the CISAC Vice-President said.

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CISAC is also working to extend the private copying initiative to other parts of the Africa region.  Chaka Chaka said the legislative instrument introduced among the eight countries of the UEMOA should be extended to the fifteen countries of the ECOWAS so that the benefits of the work already done are leveraged widely.

Private copying levies deliver significant remuneration to creators of music and other genres internationally. CISAC’s Global Collections Report for 2023 shows that private copying raised income of 368 million euros for creators globally in 2022.

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