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High time Swak, Sabah have own Collective Management of Copyright

1 month ago, 17-Jun-2021

Datuk Seri Alexander Nanta Linggi

KUALA LUMPUR (June 17): The setting up of new Collective Management of Copyright (CMO) organisations in Sarawak and Sabah for the collection and distribution of music royalties for the states music creators, should not be an issue.

Minister of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Dato Sri Alexander Nanta Linggi said the nature and music environment in Sarawak and Sabah were distinctive, with thousands of local ethnic songs being composed by native music makers, making it necessary for both states to appoint their own CMOs.

This would help protect music composers in both states, besides exploiting optimum rewards possible for composers in Sarawak and Sabah.

I truly support the setting up of new CMOs. To me, there should be the dedicated CMOs (in Sarawak and Sabah respectively) to increase efficiency to achieve the intended objectives (better management of royalty collection and distribution).

We see the reasonableness in all this. We feel that theres room for this to be achieved in a manner of the objective of CMO, he said during a live webinar session known as Khazanah Muzik Sabah Sarawak. Pulangkan Ke Pangkuan Kami yesterday night.

The session, which saw participation from more than 100 music industry players was organised by Wisdom Foundation Malaysia.

Apart from Nanta, the two-hour session also included other panelists such as Asmin Mudin the chairman of Sabah Music Composers and Video Makers Association (SCORE), Datuk Mohamad Alamin the chairman of Malaysian Intellectual Property Corporation (MyIpo), Gibson Rentap the chairman of Armada Anak Seni Sarawak (ARAS), Tan Soh Phing Juliet managing director of Music Right Sarawak Berhad (MRSB), and Roger Chin an Intellectual Property lawyer.

In December last year, Asmin, Sabah-born prolific music composer who has composed more than 200 of the countrys popular hits under his belt including Man Bais Kau Ilhamku, Jaclyn Victors Gemilang and Fauziah Latiffs Enggan among others, expressed his disappointment over the current state of royalty distribution in the music industry, claiming that the welfare of Sabah and Sarawaks music composers were neglected by already established CMOs.

This has prompted Music Rights Sabah Berhad (MRS) and Music Right Sarawak Berhad (MRSB) to file a petition, to call for the formation of Sarawak and Sabah’s CMO.

Nanta said the setting up of the CMO however would need to be thoroughly looked into, to avoid any issues in the future.

We have heard grouses from the people involved in the collective bodies before whereby some people were not able to get their fair share of royalties, leaving everyone in a limbo, he said.

He added that through Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia (MyIPO), an agency under MDTCA which is the nations custodian of intellectual property rights, the ministry would take a holistic approach to improve transparency and fairness in the royalty collections by the collective management organisations in the creative industry.

These CMOs could only be declared as a collecting body by the Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia (MYIPO) pursuant to the provisions of the Copyright Act 1987.

By prioritising transparency, accountability and good governance as the core of our policies, we can monitor how royalties and equitable remunerations are managed by incorporating a sustainable revenue stream for the music creators.

That is why it is imperative that these collective management organisations (or collecting bodies) function at the highest standard. We must lay strong principles before any collective management organisations are set up to carry the task, he added.

He also said that the matter would be raised in the ministrys post cabinet meeting soon.

I hope a concrete development can be achieved by year end, he said.

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