Helsinki, 7 March 2016 – The Board of Directors of the International Confederation of Music Publishers (ICMP) met in Helsinki on 1 and 2 March. As well as discussing practical and strategic issues, the Confederation’s Board expressed its “serious concerns” about the situation at Spanish collecting society SGAE. The meeting opened with presentations from TEOSTO, the Finnish copyright organisation for composers, lyricists, arrangers and music publishers, and FMPA, the Finnish Music Publishers Association that focused on the state of play and trends in the Finnish music sector.  Legal and regulatory developments such as EU copyright reform were then discussed as were ICMP’s governance, and developments made in each of the Confederation’s working groups and committees, with a special focus on the progress of ICMP’s Anti-Piracy Committee.
While discussing issues related to collective management, ICMP’s Board raised the serious concerns of the music publishing community, not only in Spain but also internationally, regarding SGAE’s functioning and distribution practices.
Specifically, the Board expressed serious concerns about SGAE’s inappropriate and unbalanced TV Broadcast distribution rules. The current system allows for a manipulation of television revenue, which is detrimental to the interests of the vast majority of Spanish authors and to all foreign ones. In addition, the Board condemned the current functioning of SGAE’s different governing bodies, which involves many meetings and an erratic decision making process, negatively impacting its members.
In light of this situation, the Board is recommending that ICMP members also consider other licensing possibilities outside of SGAE in order to protect their repertoire in Spain.  It is also calling on SGAE and the general collective management community to address the seriousness of this matter and to focus its efforts on finding a definitive solution.
“I would like to thank the Board for coming to Helsinki,” said ICMP Chair Andrew Jenkins. “Meeting face-to-face helps us come up with new ideas and future plans for ICMP. It is also vital for addressing critical issues such as those happening in Spain.”
“It is important that the music publishing community comes together to discuss best practices and experiences on operational, governmental and regulatory matters. These meetings help us do just that,” added ICMP Director General Coco Carmona.

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