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Ambassador King Delivers Closing Statement at WIPO Conference in Beijing
June 26, 2012

Audiovisual Performances Treaty
Group B Closing Statement
Ambassador Betty E. King
June 26, 2012

A woman speaking at a microphone
Ambassador Betty King speaking at WIPO conference – Photo by Yuan Wenming

Mr. President,

I am taking the floor on behalf of Group B to congratulate you, your vice presidents, the chairs and vice chairs of the various committees, all delegations and groups, and Director General Gurry and the WIPO Secretariat for a successful outcome this week.  I also wish to sincerely thank the People’s Republic of China for its gracious hospitality during this diplomatic conference.

Mr. President, the Beijing Treaty will be the first copyright treaty to emerge from the World Intellectual Property Organization since the WIPO Copyright Treaty and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty in 1996.   As everyone knows, the WPPT failed to secure the rights of audiovisual performers, but member states committed to continue the work on providing protection, and ultimately convened a diplomatic conference in 2000.  However, success eluded us and the performers we were seeking to protect when the 2000 diplomatic conference was suspended because agreement could not be reached on just one of the twenty articles.  Through perseverance and dedication we have finally fulfilled our commitment to bring audiovisual performers into the broad system of protection.

Our success today not only benefits audiovisual performers, but it also reaffirms the importance of working together in a multilateral environment.  Multilateralism provides a stage on which states can act to overcome differences and provide real benefits to humanity, including the advancement of development through effective use of intellectual property.

Group B is confident that the constructive spirit exhibited here this week by all delegations and groups will travel with us back to Geneva and allow us to accomplish so much more in the months and years to come.

Thank you, Mr. President