Belize Society of Composers, Artists, Publishers Offers Recommendations on Commercial Licensing Bill
Posted: Wednesday, May 25, 2022. 6:43 p.m. CST.
By Aaron Humes: Among other recommendations, the Belizean Society of Composers Authors Publishers (BSCAP) recommended to the House committee overseeing the Commercial Licensing Bill that, in the case of artists, it should be required that a public performance is obtained as a prerequisite to obtaining or renewing a commercial license.
BSCAP is concerned that artists are being asked to pay a tax to legitimize their business, but fundamental aspects of intangible commercial assets, in particular the copyright of music and other creative expressions, do not have not been protected and, therefore, music users are not authorized and otherwise in compliance. with the Copyright Act passed in 2000.
Such a license, he says, “will ensure that creators are properly compensated for their creativity and will guarantee to generate more revenue for the government, as the artistic community pays the associated government taxes”.
He generally supported the need expressed by Committee members for increased revenues to cover operating expenses in municipalities and villages and to structure the industry and facilitate growth.
However, he agrees that more research and consultation should have been conducted by the government to assess the needs of creators and the viability of implementing and enforcing a licensing structure.
The bill will pass its second and third readings in Parliament once full consultations have been conducted.
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