Musicians’ unions from 10 Latin American countries met in Montevideo (Uruguay) from the 9 to 11 July 2013 for a regional conference on capacity building, intellectual property rights and gender equality, within the framework of a regional project financed by LO-TCO (Sweden).
The 18 delegates attending highlighted the difficulties encountered by professional musicians in Latin America, in particular the absence of any real rights as workers when they have to exercise their activity as self-employed musicians. They deplored national legislations which provided insufficient protection for intellectual property (treaties not fully or unsatisfactorily transposed, no private copying exception) as well as an unfair sharing of revenues from exploitation of their recordings on Internet.
The meeting, which benefitted from the backing of of FUDEM and Agremyarte unions, as well as Montevideo City authorities, finally adopted several joint declarations. In particular, participants wanted to encourage regional states to engage immediate consultations with interested organisations with a view to swiftly ratifying the WIPO treaty on the protection of audiovisual performances (Beijing Treaty).
In addition, delegates expressed unanimous indignation at the treatment by certain European states of Bolivian President Evo Morales (the presidential plane was denied overflight of Spanish, French, Italian and Portuguese territories).