SCCR29 December 11, 2014 Plenary regarding limitations and exceptions for Libraries and Archives
The Chair is keeping the schedule quite rigorously and between the short coffee break and the end of the plenary session at 6pm, we had little time for the general statements. However, all the regional groups such as the Asia-Pacific, Group B, GRULAC (Latin American and Caribbean states) and the African Group made their statements (see below for excerpts) and we were not really surprised by the groups’ positions. They were followed by a few individual delegations such as the EU and Mexico. The European Union was eager to push back against the position expressed by the Asia Pacific group, GRULAC and the African Group, which were all in some ways quite supportive of more work on the L&E for libraries and archives. Chile, the United States and Iran will be on tomorrow morning.
Japan on behalf of Group B (US, Japan, Australia, Canada,Switzerland, Norway and Western Europe):
We feel that we had a very good discussion and exchange of experiences and views based on that study at this session. Therefore we believe that further exchange of concrete and actual experiences of Member States based on this study could enrich the source of reference in policy making. This is consistent with a principles that the recognition and respect should be given to differences of legal systems relating to libraries and archives. Thanks to question-and-answer sessions on the study we reconfirmed the importance of flexibilities to be left to respective countries on this subject matter. Group B believes this could form a core part of our consensual basis for future work. The Committee should give further consideration to the United States contribution by SCCR/26/8 titled objective and principles for limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives.
The reality which we face at the General Assembly clearly shows us that the exchange of national experiences is common component namely con sensual basis on which all Member States could further work at this Committee. And the discussion and objective and principle level could compliment that exercise. We have to bear in mind that no Consensus exists within this Committee for the normative work or on the way forward. It would be wise to look at this and try to make steady progress on the common component. Group B will continue to engage in the discussions on the limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives in a constructive manner. I Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Paraguay on behalf of GRULAC:
PARAGUAY: Thank you very much Chairman for giving me the floor. I’m going to make this statement on behalf of the countries from Latin America and the Caribbean. We would like to state that we value the work that has been undertaken by the ghit committee on this topic to date. GRULAC has always considered that it was timely to have discussion on all of the proposals submitted, specifically the compilation of text that was briefly present at the last session by the Delegations of India, Brazil, Uruguay and the African Group. This proposal was not discussed and it was introduced late. Members were in the able to make specific comments on the proposal as reflected in the document SCCR/28/3. Specifically as from paragraph 369. Thank you very much sir.
KENYA for the African Group:
>> KENYA: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The African Group considers exceptions and limitations for libraries and archives extremely important. Indeed the group has submitted a pros posal on this topic in the past. The group would like to highlight five issues which it considers critical for advancing the discussions on exceptions and limitations for libraries and archives.
First the mandate of SCCR which is to advance discussion on the substance of an issue to the point where the main characteristics of the possible solution are clear and then formulate recommendations for consideration by the General Assembly on the appropriate form and procedural steps for the solution to be adopted and implemented whether by a formal Treaty or by other means Two, the 2012 General Assembly mandate which called the SCCR to work towards an appropriate international legal instrument or instruments where the model law joint recommendation Treaty and/or other forms with a target to submit recommendations or limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives to the General Assembly by the 28th session of the SCCR. Three, precedent set by this Committee in 2007 when it meets the target to convene a Diplomatic Conference to adopt a Treaty for the protection of broadcasting organizations. At that time the Committee decided to maintain the topic of broadcasting organizations on the agenda until it was resolved. Further the General Assembly in 2012 requested the Committee to submit a recommendation for the protection of broadcasting organizations to the 2014 General Assembly. This did not happen but discussions have progressed smoothly for the last two and a half days.
The statements from various Delegations on the need to concentrate on substance and not procedural matters and fifthly the excellent study and presentation of the results of the study by professor Kenth crews and the discussions that have followed. In this regard Mr. Chairman, the group believes that time has come to move discussions on exceptions and limitations for libraries and archives forward and proposes that the discussions be based on the consolidated African Group, Brazil, Ecuador and India as the text captured in document SCCR/29/4. Finally, we request that the Secretariat compiles the results or the summary of our discussions that are followed from the presentation of the study in a format that can be useful in advancing our discussions in this area. I thank you.
Followed by China:
>> CHINA: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. This Delegation would like to thank WIPO Secretariat for the work that has been done regarding exceptions and limitations for libraries and archives. In an early statement we said that various institutions are of a nature of public service, sdugss of this topic will be able to contribute to balancing the rights of the both claims on the one hand rightsholders and the public interest in our existing copyright law we have stipulated for exceptions and limitations. In our third amendment we have given fuller consideration to exceptions and limitations. This Delegation supports continued discussions of this subject matter at the saim time we also welcome other Delegations to provide more information to be conducive to the furthering of the discussions. Any contributions to our discussions we will take flexible and open attitude to accept them. We hope that this topic will — the SCCR will remain on this topic in future work. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The European Union followed by Mexico:
> EUROPEAN UNION: Okay. Yes. Thank you. Shall I do the statement right now or just to check if all the regional coordinators have delivered theirs? Yes? Yes. Okay. Thank you. Chairman, the E ushg and its Member States believe that libraries archives and other memory institutions play an essential role in our society in the dissemination of knowledge, information and culture and we support their work across a wide range of policy areas. We are not willing to consider a legally binding instrument on limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives. And in that respect we think that any proposals containing language geared towards that goal are not helpful to reach a con sental basis for our further discussions. We believe however that there is a role for WIPO and this Committee to work on this subject. The ultimate goal should be that exceptions are implemented effectively in a way that helps these institutions fulfill their public interest missions well. The EU and its Member States therefore very much favor to have an exchange of national experiences which can be based on the update of the study by professor Kenth crews. The European Union and its member states remain committed to constructive and concrete contribution to work on exceptions and limitations for libraries and ar choois and we believe it needs clarity. In that respect it is unfortunate that the General Assembly did not take decisions as to what the Committee is instructed to do on libraries and archives. After the failure of the Committee is instructed to do on libraries and archives. After the failure of the SCCR to fulfill a mandate to provide recommendations that only extend to its 28th session.
We cannot afford to proceed in the same manner and to repeat the same mistakes. To succeed we must set a common objective so that the wealth of expertise and energy present in this Committee is used to a fruitful purpose which is our shared goal. Chairman, the E ushg and its Member States therefore recommend that the committee with the help of the Secretariat make an objective assessment of where we stand, what is possible and what our goal should be in this light. It is important that we have clarity on the parameters of our discussion, on exceptions and limitations for libraries and archives in this new context. On its objective and on the nature of their respective result. As the basis to discuss substance. We believe that such clarity is fundamental and a precondition of subsequent discussions on libraries and ar chooifss to be meanfuling and operational. We therefore hope that our efforts during this session of the SCCR will focus on achieving this clarity. And fektive international copyright
system in this area will not be defined by new normative efforts. Instead it can be achieved by recognition and effective implementation of the existing exceptions and limitations. The pursuit of clarity and common ground should be in the focus of this session. Thank you.
> MEXICO: Thank you very much Chairman. As has been stated in this Committee libraries play a fundamental role for society at large. They have their main objective to guarantee access to reading material and to the different information media and knowledge media supporting the education and culture of the whole country and so as well as the improvement of our daily lives. Libraries are important for human beings. They allow us to satisfy whatever need for information or knowledge we may have and that is why some authors state that libraries are in fact, the memory of human kind. In this Information Society that we live in today knowledge and information have become a driving force for economic and social development of all countries. Through reading we can improve quality of lives, that is of all human beings and of all societies. Libraries and archives therefore play a vital role
and one that is cross-cutting. Libraries have as their objective to provide in way to printed boobings and kij tal books and other comilt tear sovss allowing all of our populations to acquire knowledge and to transmit it to grow and to preserve that knowledge in all branches of knowledge.