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The Diplomatic Conference in Marrakesh started its work


On 18 June, in the city of Marrakesh, Morocco, took place the official opening of the Diplomatic Conference to Conclude a Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works by Visually Impaired Persons or Persons with Print Disabilities, convened by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

The work of the Diplomatic Conference runs fr om 18 to 28 June 2013 and meets more than 600 delegates from WIPO’s 186 member states, including the Republic of Moldova.

The Diplomatic Conference is the culmination of lengthy discussions on creating a framework that would facilitate access to works protected by copyright books and other written materials in a predictable and equally, such as print or Braille large print and digital audio formats for visually impaired persons, most of whom live in countries with low living standards. Beneficiaries will have easier access to literature, textbooks and other teaching materials or entertainment. This can be achieved by their inability access to specific books.

Presenting the message from His Majesty, King Mohammed VI of the Kingdom of Morocco, addressed to the participants, Morocco’s Minister of Communications and Government Spokesperson Mustapha Khalfi said that this “Diplomatic Conference is of crucial importance,” noting that “now is the time to adopt the Marrakesh Treaty, and we look forward to the endorsement of the first international document in the history of the World Intellectual Property Organization that provides for exclusive exceptions and lim itations to copyright as an exceptional measure in copyright doctrine.” “In today’s globalized world, the Diplomatic Conference can help give globalization a human face through the adoption of the International Treaty to be discussed in Marrakesh. Such a Treaty will enable the blind and the visually impaired to access, research and take advantage of written copyrighted material across the world,” the King’s message said.

In his speech at the opening of the Diplomatic Conference, Francis Gurry, WIPO Director General said that “the objective of the Diplomatic Conference is a relatively simple and straightforward one – to alleviate the book famine that causes over 300 million visually impaired persons, the majority of them in developing countries, to be excluded from access to over 90% of published works”. This objective, said Director General, “will be achieved by establishing an enabling legal framework that will empower that magic wand, and the magic wands of audio books and large-print formats, by facilitating the production of accessible formats and their exchange across borders”.

Mr. Gurry also said that “negotiators have the task of, on the one hand, designing a workable system that will ensure that accessible formats can be produced and exchanged across borders around the world in a simple and easy manner and, on the other hand, providing assurances to authors and publishers that that system will not expose their assets to misuse in parallel markets that are not intended to serve the visually impaired and the print disabled. Their success in finding the right balance will ensure the success of the Treaty”.

Initiation of negotiations by the Republic of Moldova on the Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works by Visually Impaired Persons or Persons with Print Disabilities was arranged by Presidential Decree no. 661/VII of 04.06.2013. Republic of Moldova is represented in the Diplomatic Conference by Lilia BOLOCAN, Director General of the State Agency on Intellectual Property (AGEPI) and Ion Tiganas, Deputy Director General of AGEPI.

Details of the opening of the Diplomatic Conference at:

Message of WIPO Director General, Mr. Francis Gurry, at the opening of the Diplomatic Conference at: