MIAMI — In an effort to stem piracy, Panama’s customs agency has signed a cooperation agreement with the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry Latin America.
The deal provides for the exchange of statistical data and information and the creation of an anti-piracy unit for intellectual property. The unit will receive technical assistance from the IFPI. Also, as it does in other countries, the IFPI will train Panama’s customs agents on piracy and IP issues.
The agreement was spurred by the fact that Panama is a major point of entry for blank CD-Rs into the Latin region. IFPI Latin America estimates that 40 million blank CD-Rs come into the country every year, and either remain there or are exported throughout Central and South America.
Meanwhile, Panama’s music market has been decimated by piracy. The IFPI estimates that roughly 50% of all CDs sold in the country are pirated.