The National Executive Committee of the Ghana Association of Phonographic Industry (GAPI) on Thursday said the high level of piracy in the country was a bane to the vibrant and lucrative music industry.

It said about 10 million dollars were lost annually to owners of musical works through piracy and other illegal practices because only a copy of 100 Compact Discs (CD) sold on the market could be genuine.

Mr John Mensah-Sarpong, President of GAPI announced this at a day’s workshop organised by the association for stakeholders in the music industry in Kumasi.

He noted that with a market size of about 15 million copies of cassettes sold annually, it had reduced to less than three million copies due to the illegal use of musical works and could lead to the collapse of the music industry when not addressed.

Mr Mensah-Sarpong appealed to government to speed up with the passage of a Legislative Instrument (LI) for the establishment of a Copyright Tribunal to assist owners of musical works to take legal action against offenders to enable them benefit from their investments.

He said GAPI was collaborating with some NGO’s to establish a Copyright Investment Bank (CIB) in the country to assist musicians and producers to enhance their businesses.

Mr Kwame Anyimadu Antwi, a Legal Practitioner, urged GAPI to come out with a security device to track down radio and television stations that used musical and audio-visual works as their raw materials without paying royalties to the owners.

Source: GNA

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