Posted: August 18, 2019
Proposed Legislation Will Benefit Musicians Significantly – Deputy Minister Gina
|The Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Ms Nomalungelo Gina says the amendment of the Copyright Act of 1978 and the Performers’ Protection Act of 1967 will significantly benefit South African musicians. Gina was speaking at a ceremony to announce the 2019 South African Traditional Music Achievement (SATMA) Awards nominees in Nelspruit last night.
“the dti is the custodian of the Copyright Act of 1978 and the Performers’ Protection Act of 1967 that recognise the rights of musicians to their musical works and their performances and provides economic benefits. Both these Acts are outdated and not in line with international best practices as well as the digital era, hence the department engaged on an initiative to amend them. The bills to amend the two Acts have undergone a parliamentary process and are currently with President Cyril Ramaphosa for his signature after been approved by both the National Assembly and National Council of Provinces,” said Gina.
She added that the Bills elicited different views with some stakeholders supporting them and others against their passing into law.
“However, we at the dti are of the view that both legislation will go a long way to ensure that our musicians maximise the opportunities available to them to exploit their talents and to form part of the mainstream economy. Mention is made of these laws because today is about the recognition of traditional music and musicians in this genre and their talents as well as their creativity. This is a special annual event that recognises the creative expressions of the musicians in South Africa who specialise in traditional music,” said Gina.
She added that if well regulated, supported, protected and commercialised, the cultural industries, which include musical, literary, artistic, dramatic works, as well as film and television, could lead to economic boom.
She cited studies in the United States of America that show that copyright-based industries grow exponentially even if the economy was under depression as core copyright-based industries add about $1.3. trillion to American economy.
“This happens when the sector is well-regulated with a progressive copyright regime. The laws that protect and promote traditional music must be an enabler for traditional music to thrive. This can be achieved, amongst others, when musicians view music as a business, when broadcasters, recording companies and collecting societies collect and pay royalties, when government open markets for our traditional music in the continent and abroad, when traditional musicians collaborate with other musicians in producing other genres; and when traditional musicians use technology to access domestic and international markets,” emphasised Gina.