MPA and IFPI commit to enhanced copyright protection in Latin America
London, February 15, 2006
The Latin American regional operations of the Motion Picture Association (MPA) and IFPI (representing the recording industry worldwide) announced today that they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) committing both organizations to improving and expanding joint anti-piracy and legislative efforts throughout the region.
The new MOU builds on the existing framework created by the global agreement signed by the CEOs of both associations in June of 2000. The two associations are stepping up cooperation in fighting both online and optical disc piracy. Currently, IFPI and the MPA cooperate in matters such as the seizure of illegally-imported blank media from Paraguay to Brazil.
"Enhancing our efforts in the area of copyright protection is crucial to the future of filmmaking all over the world," said MPA Chairman and CEO Dan Glickman. "We have to continue to work together to protect and promote the creative excellence behind the movies people love."
IFPI Chairman and CEO John Kennedy welcomed the move. "Piracy of music and films is a challenge which our two organizations should increasingly face together. We have common goals in promoting and protecting our creative output, and we have common adversaries, from the organized traffickers of CDs to the websites that build their business on copyright theft."
On the legislative front, the two entities will jointly encourage the passage of measures that will protect the recording and audiovisual industries, such as pending bills in Mexico which propose to ban camcording in movie theatres, provide ex-officio powers to law enforcement officers and secure stiffer penalties for convicted pirates. Similar measures are under consideration in Brazil, Chile, Argentina, and other countries in the region.
The two associations also plan to work together against the fast-growing problem of internet piracy - taking the form of illegal file-sharing and websites, - as well as the sale and distribution of hard goods through online transactions. Currently IFPI and MPA cooperate in matters such as working with local authorities to identify illegal importations of blank optical discs from Paraguay to Brazil.
Furthermore, both associations encourage the signing of Free Trade Agreements with the United States, and the full implementation of these agreements by signatory countries.
Steve Solot, Vice President for Latin American Operations of the Motion Picture Association, said: "This agreement will intensify the level of cooperation in specific countries where we already have efforts and extend the help to other countries in Latin America, particularly Peru, and eventually Mexico and Brazil which are the two largest markets in Latin America."
Raul Vazquez, Regional Director for IFPI Latin America, said: "Our new partnership will begin in many countries with joint efforts between government officials in the region and in creating public awareness campaigns. We are pleased to be moving forward with this plan to team up with the MPA who share our commitment to limiting the damage to our industries caused by copyright violators."
IFPI coordinates the recording industry's fight against music piracy throughout Latin America, a region which has seen music sales fall 30% over the last five years. The region's two major markets, Mexico and Brazil, feature in IFPI's top 10 priority list of countries published in IFPI's Commercial Piracy Report 2005. Paraguay, a major trans-shipment point for pirate discs, is also on the IFPI priority list. IFPI estimates that global sales of pirate music recordings are worth US$4.6 billion a year.
IFPI promotes the interests of the international recording industry worldwide. Its membership comprises over 1400 major and independent companies in more than 70 countries. It also has affiliated industry national groups in 48 countries. IFPI's mission is to fight music piracy; promote fair market access and good copyright laws; help develop the legal conditions and the technologies for the recording industry to prosper in the digital era; and to promote the value of music.
About the MPA
The Motion Picture Association (MPA) represents the interests of major motion picture companies in the global marketplace. On behalf of its Member Companies, the MPA conducts investigations around the world, assists with the criminal and civil litigation generated by such cases, and conducts education outreach programs to teach movie fans around the world about the harmful effects of piracy.
The MPA directs its worldwide anti-piracy operations from its headquarters based in Encino, California and has regional offices located in Brussels (Europe, Middle East and Africa), Sao Paulo (Latin America), Montreal (Canada) and Singapore (Asia-Pacific). Its anti-piracy activities have helped to transform entire markets from pirate to legitimate, benefiting video distributors, retailers, and foreign and local filmmakers alike. The MPA Member Companies include: Buena Vista International, Inc.; Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.; Paramount Pictures Corporation; Sony Pictures Releasing International Corporation; Twentieth Century Fox International Corporation; Universal International Films, Inc.; and Warner Bros. Pictures International, a division of Warner Bros. Pictures Inc.
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