CRSEA elected new management
This year the annual meeting of the General Assembly of the Confederation of Rightholders’ Societies of Europe and Asia (CRSEA) was held online. During the event, the Presidium of the organization was elected, and the President and Director General were appointed. In addition, four new members have joined CRSEA.
According to Andrei Krichevsky, Secretary General of CRSEA, in 2019 the total amount of royalties collected by the collective management of copyright and related rights within CRSEA, amounted to 159.05 million euros, which is 4% more than in 2018.
In terms of international cooperation, there was a significant breakthrough in cooperation with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). “We have participated in the Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights, in working meetings both at the level of the creative industries sector, and in person with Francis Gurry, CEO of WIPO. There were presented digital services for protection of copyright objects, as well as the parties reached an agreement on exchange of information and technological cooperation. In addition, we actively work in the field of technologies. In Russia, partly in Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Belarus and Kyrgyzstan, the integration of the automated system of collection and payment of royalties “Hypergraph” keeps operating. We are introducing mechanisms of machine learning and expanding the functionality of our products,” said Krichevsky.
In 2019, the Confederation expanded its geographical presence, established contacts with Jordanian partners, with copyright alliances in Latin America, and became a co-host of IPQuorum – the largest in Eurasia International Strategic Forum on Intellectual Property.
According to Krichevsky, in 2020 and 2021, CRSEA plans to take part in several major events in digital and offline formats (Distant & Digital conference, round table at the Moscow International Film Festival, participation in the St. Petersburg International Cultural Forum, WIPO workshops). The development strategy also provides for strengthening contacts with the ministries and administrations of CRSEA member countries to strengthen protection of the rights of authors.
The pandemic and its aftermath
Participants of the meeting put forward a number of initiatives and talked about how the pandemic affected copyright royalties and the challenges faced by collective management societies. Director of the National Center of Intellectual Property of the Republic of Belarus (NCIP), Alexander Denisman, urged to take all the necessary measures to prevent a drop in royalties. He called interaction with digital platforms one of the most promising areas of NCIP. According to Denisman, the organization he represents has become more active in courts and is entering a completely new stage: “This is the level of so-called “complex” cases involving the use of audiovisual services.”
Dinara Moldosheva, Chairperson of the State Intellectual Property and Innovations Office of the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic (Kyrgyzpatent), said the country was able to support the authors by sending 21% more funds to pay royalties in the first half of the year compared to the same period last year. The department launched implementation of Hypergraph system, which makes it possible to automate the collection and payment of royalties: “Our employees worked very actively during the pandemic. At present, we continue integration of the system. If any difficulties arise, we go through them at webinars. The introduction of this system is included in the government strategic plan of Kyrgyzpatent for 2020. The pilot launch is scheduled for September.”
Sergei Kukhto, Chairman of the Board of the Belarusian Society of Authors, Performers and Other Copyright Holders (BOAIP), proposed to establish an award named after the first president of CRSEA, composer Oleg Molchan: “This award will be given to the most active members and partners of CRSEA for their work aimed at promotion and protection of the rights of authors.”
According to Alexey Karelov, Director of Russian Organization for Intellectual Property (VOIS), the amount of collected royalties will most likely decrease. “According to preliminary forecasts, VOIS will have a 25% fall,” the expert said.
A decrease in revenues is also recorded in Kazakhstan, said Lyubov Balmagambetova, President of “Amanat” non-profit organization for protection of copyright and related rights (Kazakhstan): “The situation is difficult, some radio stations had zero revenues in QII 2020”.
Aset Bliev, Chairman of the Association of Legal Entities “Eurasian Union of Copyright Holders”, spoke about the achievements of the Association: “Kazakhstan established the rate of 0.7 percent for private copying. We collaborate with business structures, equipment importing organizations. I hope we will succeed this year.”
Yuri Georgitsa, President of the National Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property ANPCI (Moldova), supported his colleague from the Kyrgyz Republic, noting that “CRSEA is a good standing organization”, and he is confident in its development and great future.
Following the meeting, the new composition of the Presidium of the Confederation was also approved. Siyavush Kerimi, Honored Artist of Azerbaijan, Director of the National Conservatory of the Republic of Azerbaijan, became the new President of CRSEA.
Four new organizations have become members of CRSEA. The participants of the General Assembly unanimously voted for the following organizations to join CRSEA: “Amanat” and “Eurasian Union of Rightholders” from Kazakhstan, China Written Works Copyright Society (CWWCS) and the Public Association of Copyright and Related Rights Owners of Uzbekistan (UASO).
Artur Pogosyan, a statesman of Armenia, who served as Deputy Minister of Culture of Armenia from 2005 to 2018, was elected as the new Director General of CRSEA.
The Assembly was also attended by Director of Russian Authors Society Alexander Sukhotin, Deputy Director of Russian Union of Rightholders Sergey Filippov, Director of UPRAVIS Erik Valdes-Martinez, Chairman of Azerbaijani Authors’ Society “AzAvtor” Ismail Mammadkarimov, Chairman of Turkish Society of ILESAM Mehmet Nuri Parmaksiz, Chairman of Kazakhstan Authors’ Society Balnur Kydyrbek, Director of Chinese Society for Collective Management of Copyright to Literary Works Oleg Hongbo, Deputy Chairman of the Board of Public Association of Copyright and Related Rights Holders of Uzbekistan Aziz Babarazakov (Uzbekistan), Director of “Armavtor” Susanna Nersisyan (Armenia), Chairman of the Board of Belarusian Society of Authors, Performers and Other Copyright Holders (BOAIP) Sergey Kukhto, Deputy Director of BOAIP Alexey Bichurin, Head of Copyright and Related Rights Department of Kyrgyzpatent Yryskul Tursunalieva, as well as Honored Artist of the Kyrgyz Republic Bek Borbiev, and Deputy Chairman of the Authors’ Council of National Center of Intellectual Property (NCIP), Belarus singer Irina Vidova-Molchan, Moldavian composer Vyacheslav Danilyuk, President of the Armenian Authors’ Society “Armavtor”, Honored Artist of the Republic of Armenia, composer Yervand Yerznkyan and many others.