Canada's music industry is welcoming a Canadian House of Commons committee report which calls for an immediate overhaul of the country's copyright law.

Canada's music industry is welcoming a Canadian House of Commons committee report which calls for an immediate overhaul of the country's copyright law.

The Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage tabled its Interim Report on Copyright Reform in the House of Commons in Ottawa, Canada on May 12.

The Committee addressed issues that have arisen as a result of technological developments. It recommended that legislation to update the Canadian Copyright Act be introduced in the House of Commons by November, 2004.

Brian Robertson, president of the Canadian Recording Industry Assn. (CRIA) in Toronto comments: "We are calling on the minister of Canadian Heritage to ensure immediate adoption of the Committee's recommendations.

Canada's music industry has long been impatient over the slow pace of the government's copyright agenda. It has repeatedly pressured the government to ratify two World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) treaties.

While the WIPO treaties were signed by the Canadian government in 1997, they have yet to be ratified. The two treaties--the Performances and Phonogram Treaty and the Copyright Treaty--deal with copyright protection in the digital age. Forty-four other countries have introduced such laws.

"We commend Committee chair Sam Bulte and the other Heritage Committee members on making decisions in a few weeks that the departments of Canadian Heritage and Industry Canada couldn't make in several years," adds Robertson.

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