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EPA urges artistes to form themselves into legal entities

EPA urges artistes to form themselves into legal entities


Music stakeholders are to establish a committee to explore and take advantage of the opportunities available to them under the European Partnership Agreement (EPA).{{more}}

The decision to set up this committee follows a forum on the EPA which took place at Frenches House March 13, 2012.

The main presentation at the forum was delivered by Project Manager of the EPA Implementation Unit Okolo John-Patrick.

John-Patrick’s presentation generated a lively discussion among the large audience, with many enquiring about the legal requirements of the EPA’s Protocol on Cultural Cooperation.

Artistes were told about the importance of forming themselves into legal entities, which is among the conditions for the provision of entertainment services in EU countries under the EPA. They heard that the EPA only recognises legal persons and not individuals.

Another of the requirements highlighted by John-Patrick was that of qualification. Artistes were urged to get the necessary certification, which they were informed can be acquired through initiatives of their representative organisations, working in collaboration with business support organisations such as the St Vincent and the Grenadines Coalition of Service Industries (SVG CSI) and the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Culture.

The forum on the EPA was jointly organised by the SVG AMP (Association of Music Professionals and ECCO (Eastern Caribbean Collective Organisation for Music Rights).

SVG AMP’s EPA Committee is to take steps to, among things, raise the awareness of music stakeholders of the opportunities available to them under the EPA, facilitate the process of certification of music practitioners, seek funding for capacity building of music stakeholders, provide information on and help artistes to take advantage of opportunities available for the provision of entertainment services and cultural exchanges in EU countries and provide information on partnerships possibilities in the Caribbean and Europe.

The forum also heard brief addresses from the President of SVG AMP Bomani Charles and the Vincentian representative on ECCO’s Board of Directors, Joffre Venner. It was chaired by ECCO’s Agent in St Vincent and the Grenadines, Bernard Joseph.