Afghanistan and copyright issues
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In 1958, Afghanistan ratified the Agreement on the Importation of Educational, Scientific and Cultural Materials, with Annexes A to E and Protocol annexed (Florence, 17 June 1950). In 1979, it accepted the Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property (Paris, 14 November 1970) and in 2005 it ratified the Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (Paris, 16 November 1972). It acceded to the WIPO treaty on 13 September 2005, which came into action at the end of the year.
In November 2003, the Copyright World journal reported that a group, Intellectual Property Working Group of the Afghanistan Transitional Commercial Law Project, had been working on setting up the first patent or copyright system for the country, and updating its trademark laws. It is a joint project of Center for International Management Education (CIME) and the American Bar Association's "Asia Law Initiative" (ABA-Asia).
Relations with United States
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As of 2005, Afghanistan has no official copyright relations with the United States, resulting in works published in the country not being copyrighted in the United States, regardless of any local copyright laws in Afghanistan.
In October 2007, the US Department of Commerce and the Afghanistan Ministry of Commerce and Industry signed a joint agreement to establish a forum for commercial cooperation including establishing intellectual property rights protection and enforcement.
In 2005, Deputy-Minister of Information and Culture Saied Aqa Husain Sancharaki stated that a copyright law was forthcoming, which prompted the National Independent Commission for Radio and Television Broadcasting to circulate a statement requesting that media outlets either pay royalties or cease distributing material that had been created by Radio Television Afghanistan as the outlet began transforming to a public broadcaster. It was later pointed out that RTA had no right to make such an autonomous declaration.
The move was criticised by the heads of Ayna TV and Tolo TV, who argued that the cost of royalties meant that potential independent media outlets could not afford to broadcast, and the lack of independent media in the country meant broadcasters relied on RTA footage to play "a significant cultural role...filling this void". The act contradicted the ministry's edict to "promote national culture and traditions" by outlawing the broadcast of the majority of the country's traditional films, music and programming.
Trademarks and service marks are both registered for renewable ten-year terms through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Afghanistan, which has adopted the 8th edition of the International Classification of Goods and Services.
- "Ratified and non Ratified conventions by country". UNESCO.
- Publications - MEISCA Intellectual Property Express: MEISCA Intellectual Property express: Issue 42
- "The clean slate : Drafting Afghanistan's first copyright laws" (– Scholar search). Copyright World: pp.22–25. November 2003.
- International Copyright Relations of the United States. U.S. Copyright Office.
- see 17 U.S.C. § 104
- "U.S. Department of Commerce and the Afghanistan Ministry of Commerce and Industry Joint Statement on Commercial Cooperation" (PDF). 2007-10-07. Retrieved 2008-06-10.
- "The National Independent Commission for Radio and Television Broadcasting involves itself in copyright regulation". Internews Newsletter on Freedom of Journalism in Afghanistan (8). December 2005.
- "Training workshop on Copy Right held by the National TV and ABU". Internews Newsletter on Freedom of Journalism in Afghanistan (15). October 2006.
- Overview of Trademarks in Afghanistan
- Christoph Beat Graber, Mira Burri-Nenova (2008-11-30). Intellectual property and traditional cultural expressions in a digital environment. Edward Elgar. p. 3. ISBN 978-1-84720-921-4. Retrieved 2009-10-20.
The second issue is related to law. Radio Kabul and the record company Tempo Records made a contract concerning recording rights to indigenous music in Afghanistan. Yet in international copyright law, neither the Berne Convention established in 1886, nor the Universal Copyright Convention established in 1952, included traditional music in their categories of protected works...