Copyright in the developing world

ICMP supports WIPO’s Development Agenda which is committed to improving the capacity of developing countries to benefit from the knowledge economy. ICMP Members create and do business in developing countries as well as developed economies and have both a strong interest and extensive experience in the use of copyright to further development goals.

Copyright plays a major positive role in cultural and economic growth, and a balanced implementation of the "Development Agenda" recommendations will help to recognise that role. In contrast, any weakening of copyright at international level would impede the growth of copyright sectors, particularly in the developing world where creators and rightsholders face many challenges including piracy and limited access to funding capital.

Securing effective enforcement to permit lawful access to works is one of the biggest challenges for copyright today. Account must therefore be taken of the impact of piracy on creators in developing countries and ways to improve protection of their interests must be identified. Unless rightsholders can ensure adequate enforcement of their intellectual property rights, particularly in the online environment, copyright protection itself will become meaningless, seriously undermining the incentives to create new works.