EP’s position on cross-border exchange of IP objects under Marrakesh Treaty

The European parliament has adopted its position at first reading on regulation laying dawn uniform rules on the cross-border exchange of accessible format copies of certain works and other subject matter between the Union and third countries that are parties to the Marrakesh Treaty.

The beneficiaries of the Marrakesh Treaty are persons who are blind, persons who have a visual impairment which cannot be improved so as to give them visual function substantially equivalent to that of a person who has no such impairment, persons who have a perceptual or reading disability, including dyslexia or any other learning disability preventing them from reading printed works to substantially the same degree as persons without such disability, and persons who are unable, due to a physical disability, to hold or manipulate a book or to focus or move the eyes to the extent that would be normally acceptable for reading, insofar as, as a result of such impairments or disabilities, those persons are unable to read printed works to substantially the same degree as persons without such impairments or disabilities.

Initiatives by Member States to promote the objectives of the Marrakesh Treaty and the exchange of accessible format copies with third countries that are parties to that treaty, and to support authorised entities to exchange and make information available, should be encouraged. Such initiatives could include the development of guidelines or best practices on the making and dissemination of accessible format copies in consultation with representatives of authorised entities, beneficiary persons and rightholders.

Under the Charter, all forms of discrimination, including on grounds of disability, are prohibited and the right of persons with disabilities to benefit from measures designed to ensure their independence, social and occupational integration and participation in the life of the community is recognised and respected by the Union.

Since the objective of this Regulation, namely to implement in a uniform manner the obligations under the Marrakesh Treaty with respect to the export and import between the Union and third countries that are parties to the Marrakesh Treaty of accessible format copies of certain works and other subject-matter for noncommercial purposes for the benefit of beneficiary persons, and to lay down the conditions for such export and import, cannot be sufficiently achieved by the Member States, but can rather, by reason of its scale and effects, be better achieved at Union level, the Union may adopt measures in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity as set out in Article 5 of the Treaty on European Union. In accordance with the principle of proportionality as set out in that Article, this Regulation does not go beyond what is necessary in order to achieve that objective.