Geneva, 28 April 2021 – The Philippines, through the Permanent Representative of the Philippines to Geneva, Ambassador Evan Garcia deposited today its instrument of accession to the Beijing Treaty on Audiovisual Performances (BTAP). Ambassador Garcia personally handed the instrument of accession to World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Director General Darren Tang at WIPO Headquarters.
“With the accession of the Philippines to the Beijing Treaty on Audiovisual Performances, the Philippines guarantees the expansion of the protection given to its musicians, singers, actors, and performers providing them a uniform and effective umbrella of protection critical in an ever-shifting world,” Ambassador Garcia said in his statement.
The Treaty is seen to boost the protection of IP rights of Filipino audiovisual performances in the digital era where current and emerging global technologies and trends justify enhanced cross-border protection. The creative and audiovisual sector is expected to make significant inroads in the recovery efforts during and after pandemic, as well as raise the country’s international profile and cultural esteem.
He added, “With the treaty in effect, Filipino audiovisual performers will immensely benefit from the economic rewards when their films, TV series and other audiovisual products are screened or publicly-made available in the 40 and growing number of countries party to the Treaty.”
In his tweet, Ambassador Garcia said, “This is very timely as the Philippine creative economy was severely harmed in 2020, as the entertainment industry slid to a virtual standstill with significant decrease in revenues resulting in loss of livelihood due to the extended lockdown. We are hoping that the country will bounce back and that the PH creative industry will significantly contribute in our journey to recovery.
Ambassador Garcia expressed appreciation to Director General Tang and WIPO who have collaborated with the officials of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) led by Director General Rowel Barba, in support of the Treaty that upholds the mandate to protect intellectual property (IP) rights relating to the creative and audiovisual performance industry equally to all stakeholders, including developing economies like the Philippines.
On 14 January 2021, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte signed the instrument of accession to BTAP which is consistent with the state policy declared in the Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines (Republic Act No. 8293), that the use of IP bears a social function. IPOPHL is the lead government agency in charge of the administration and implementation of the IP mandate.
The BTAP addresses the longstanding need to extend the economic and moral rights of actors and performers in audiovisual performances including films, videos and television programs. The Treaty was adopted in Beijing, China on 24 June 2012 and entered into force on 28 April 2020. It grants performers four kinds of economic rights for their performances fixed in audiovisual fixations, such as motion pictures: (i) the right of reproduction; (ii) the right of distribution; (iii) the right of rental; and (iv) the right of making available.