Music Publishers Canada has signed an open letter to the MPs and Senators of the 43rd Parliament about the Canada-U.S.-Mexico Agreement. (CUSMA) The content of this is published below.
On behalf of tens of thousands of songwriters, composers and music publishers in Canada, we welcome you back and most of all wish you a productive Parliamentary session.
We thank the government for signing the CUSMA trade agreement last year. Under it, copyright in Canada will be strengthened by extending the term of protection by 20 years, to the life of the author plus 70 years.
What does this mean for innovation in Canada?
Canadian songs and scores are heard daily on the radio, on streaming services, in video games, and in film, television and other screen-based productions around the world.
Modernizing the Copyright Act to ensure Canadian rights holders have the same protections as their international competitors is a much-needed move to help Canadian creators, and the companies that invest in them, to continue exporting their creations around the world.
A forward-looking, digitally attuned copyright regime will foster Canadian innovation, investment, and growth in a key economic sector for our great country.
It is imperative that the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) be ratified quickly to ensure that Canadian songwriters, composers and the small and large businesses that invest in music publishing are properly compensated for their work. The term extension provisions in CUSMA should be enacted immediately, without unnecessary delay and with no conditions.
Adding another 20 years to the life of a copyright means a robust creative sector, more Canadian cultural exports, and the growth of many innovative businesses that have embraced the digital market. It is long past time for Canada to catch up to its international trading partners in this respect.
CUSMA presents an amazing, tangible opportunity to expand Canada’s music publishing industry, invest more in emerging songwriters and composers and make our Canadian companies even more competitive globally. We urge all Parliamentarians to make the early ratification of CUSMA their top legislative priority.