As the doors to AVRS offices reopened across the country for its operations in 2022, Chairman, Audio Visual Rights Society of Nigeria (AVRS), Mr. Mahmood Ali-Balogun has said that 2022 will be a year of bumper growth in the Nigerian creative sector.
In his New Year message to members of AVRS spread across the country, Mr. Ali-Balogun asked the thousands of members of AVRS to see 2022 as a bumper year and a year of tremendous growth for AVRS members and their company.
Mr. Ali-Balogun whose AVRS distributed several millions of Naira to all its members in December, 2021 has also asked practitioners and investors in the film industry not to relent in professionalizing their trade and ensuring that better value is placed on their creative outputs so that the industry can contribute more significantly to the growth of the Nigerian economy.
According to Mr. Ali-Balogun, “Though the landscape of collective management in Nigeria is still evolving and challenging, we cannot afford to be discouraged, tired or lose faith. We have been entrusted with such an important responsibility, to ensure that creativity pays everyone involved in the value chain and we have sworn to execute this task to the best of our ability. We are therefore, not resting on our oars.”
Mr. Ali-Balogun used the occasion of his new year message to thank the Inspector General of Police and his team for their continued support in ensuring that users comply with the copyright law. He also thanked AVRS licensees spread across Nigeria for their continued cooperation and willingness to obey the law. He however, called on recalcitrant users who are yet to obtain the AVRS Copyright License, to do so without further delay. According to Mr. Ali-Balogun, “We are patient but very strategic in our approach. No stone will be left unturned and no user will be spared. Our task is to ensure that rightholders and practitioners in the film industry receive fair compensations for the commercial exploitation of their works.”
Mr. Ali-Balogun assured all members of AVRS that their CMO will always protect their interests in 2022 and work harder than the previous years to ensure that more royalties are earned and distributed to all members whose works are exploited. He also said that 2022 has to be the year in which the Private Copy Levy scheme is finally activated.
While commending the efforts of the Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC), he pleaded with them and the relevant agencies of government to ensure the activation of the levy as enshrined in the law.
Ali-Balogun further enjoined the National Assembly to expedite proceedings on the review of Copyright Bill 2021 to ensure it’s passed into law this first quarter of 2022.
According to him, both the activation of the private copy levy scheme and the passage into law of the copyright bill, will create additional and welcome source of income for all rightsholders and practitioners in the Nigerian creative sector and ameliorate the impact of piracy in the sector.