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UK Music chief calls on Government to pursue better global IP framework to enable future export growth

By | Published on Monday 19 January 2015

UK Music

Writing a blog post for the Department Of Culture, Media & Sport website last week, UK Music boss Jo Dipple has called on the Intellectual Property Office to “prioritise” measures that will enhance copyright frameworks at home and abroad in order to assure the continued growth of both the music and the wider creative industries.

Noting recent stats from both the DCMS and her own organisation that seemingly demonstrate the positive impact the music and creative industries have on the UK economy, employment and exports, Dipple writes: “For growth, for the future health of our economy, the creative industries are a key that policy makers must keep turning”.

She goes on: “Digitisation and the extension from domestic to global markets has allowed for a huge increase in the volume of trade. Add that to the unique British talent for creativity, and you have a rare and probably unique domestic and global export story. If we were ever once regarded as ‘fluffy’, from now on that should be ‘Fluffy’, the large, vicious, three-headed dog who was once cared for by Hagrid from ‘Harry Potter'”.

Reckoning that recent successes in exporting UK music overseas can be continued and expanded on, Dipple says: “The export story of music is immense and the opportunities to grow are unlimited. However, to expand sales to countries like Mexico and Argentina, for us to take advantage of the Chinese market, the British Government needs to help us. The Government must help establish conditions in those markets which allow us to exploit our works. Yes, it’s very popular. Yes, it’s probably consumed in vast quantities. But is there an actual market from which those who invest in the business can see returns?”

And that in no small part means the UK Government not only addressing copyright issues at home, but also putting pressure on policy makers in countries with less well developed intellectual property regimes to aid the growth of the content industries in their territories.

Noting work already being done by the UKTI’s sector advisory group, Dipple says: “The DCMS figures should act as an incentive for the Intellectual Property Office to prioritise IP policies that deliver stable and strong copyright frameworks. It is only with these in place that we can efficiently monetise intangible digital goods in Europe, in the USA and globally”.

Presumably delivering a message for whoever forms the next UK government after May’s General Election, Dipple concludes: “As we start a new year, we do so knowing the British creative sector is strong at a time of austerity and growing at a time of stagnation. Just think what we could do with every condition in the right place? Should the stars align, should ministers in charge do the right thing, should we continue to produce the best creative talent, it will be our sector that defines this country in the 21st Century, economically as well as culturally”.