IFRRO participates in WIPO High Level Conference on the publishing industry in Africa

IFRRO’s CEO Caroline Morgan, WIPO’s Sylvie Forbin, Kevin Fitzgerald, Carole Croella and Sherine Greiss, Ministers of Culture of Cameroon, Chad and Ghana  © Pierre-Olivier Lesburguères

On 22-23 November 2017 IFRRO joined WIPO and representatives from almost all 54 countries of Africa at a High Level conference on the future of the publishing industry in Africa in Yaoundé, Cameroon. Participants included publishers and Government representatives, international organisations such as the International Publishers Association (IPA), and the Ministers of Culture of Cameroon, Chad and Ghana. WIPO’s Deputy Director General Sylvie Forbin and Kevin Fitzgerald, Acting Director Copyright Infrastructure Division, led the different sessions, which included plenary and working group meetings.

IFRRO’s Caroline Morgan chaired the working group gathering English-speaking delegates and reported later on in the plenary session while IFRRO’s Pierre-Olivier Lesburguères joined the French-speaking working group.

Each working session developed a series of recommendations that will form the basis for an action plan.

As the conference was drawing to an end, Aziz Dieng, Advisor to the Minister of Culture of Senegal and Vice-Chair of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights, presented to the Ministers of Culture the three essential features needed to achieve a flourishing publishing industry in Africa: (1) the fight against piracy, (2) the introduction of private copy levies for text and image works and (3) a better transparency of Collective Management Organisations.

IFRRO is looking forward to working with WIPO, ARIPO, OAPI, Governments and RROs in Africa and all other partners and stakeholders to ensure that these three essential features are implemented, for the good of culture and access to works on the African continent.