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RIANZ and NZFA©T Sign Landmark Agreement

News Release
April 24, 2006

RIANZ and NZFA©T Sign Landmark Agreement

The Recording Industry Association of New Zealand has joined forces with the New Zealand Federation Against Copyright Theft (NZFA©T) to combat music and movie piracy.

RIANZ represents record producers, distributors and recording artists in New Zealand. NZFA©T is affiliated with the world-wide Motion Picture Association (MPA) and represents film distributors in New Zealand. The two organisations have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding, an agreement of co-operation recording an intention by the parties to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of resources used to educate the public about copyright and to strengthen enforcement efforts against piracy.

The CEO of RIANZ Campbell Smith says the agreement between the two bodies is a logical step.

“The two industries are experiencing similar problems,” says Smith. “Our copyrights are being infringed through physical and on-line piracy and we don’t intend to stand by and let it continue.”

Smith believes that the public needs to have an understanding of Intellectual Property (I.P) issues and the damage caused when copyrights are infringed.

“We intend to focus on education,’ he says. ”When files are illegally shared on the internet or when CDs or DVDs are ripped and passed on, the creators suffer. The public needs to understand how copyright works.”

The Executive Director of NZFA©T, Kevin Holland agrees.

“Our priority is stopping criminal activity. We also want to make sure the public understands what losses are suffered through copyright theft. That’s why our alliance with RIANZ is so important.”

Iain Grant, Head of Enforcement of IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry) applauds the MoU, saying information is a key component to effectively combating piracy.

“By uniting our two industries against this common problem and sharing intelligence, we strengthen our position to act against pirates. The intent of the MoU mirrors the primary objectives of the Interpol Intellectual Property Crime Action Group IIPCAG.”

Senior Vice President and Regional Director of Asia-Pacific for the MPA, Michael Ellis welcomes the initiative.

"We are hopeful that strengthened relations will result in enhanced intellectual property awareness throughout New Zealand, as well as more effective anti-piracy operations. Piracy is a scourge that is badly harming creative industries in New Zealand and worldwide."

It is timely for the MoU to be announced as World IP Day approaches (April 26) drawing attention to the global problem of copyright theft.


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