Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies.File photo: (dti)

JOHANNESBURG - Parliament’s committee on trade and industry has adopted reports on the Copyright Amendment Bill and the Performers Protection Amendment Bill and will send them to the national assembly for approval, it said on Friday.

The copyright legislation seeks to establish and protect the rights of creators and copyright owners while balancing these with the need to provide access to users for the benefit of society.

"The Copyright and Performers’ Protection Amendment Bills were introduced to modernise the legislation and align it with international treaties that South Africa intends to ratify or accede to, while addressing unfair contracting between creators or performers and copyright owners," committee chairperson Joanmariae Fubbs said.

The Copyright Amendment Bill seeks to regulate all collecting societies and address the historical lack of payment of needletime royalties to musicians.

This includes requiring that all commercial users keep accurate records of their use of sound recordings and submit them to collecting societies in order to ensure accurate and timeous distributions. The requirement has also been extended to performers in audiovisual works.

The bill also introduces a resale royalty right for the resale of original visual artistic works, such as sculptures and paintings, as permitted under the Berne Convention. 

It also provides for a sharing of royalties between creators and copyright owners or licensed users for commercial acts protected by the legislation for literary, musical and visual artistic works and between performers and copyright owners for audiovisual works.

These rights are retrospective and apply to the future earnings of these types of works created before the commencement of the bill.

The Performers’ Protection Amendment Bill strengthens the moral and economic rights of performers in the use of their performances in sound recordings or audiovisual works.

- African News Agency (ANA)