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Signing of Regulations Implementing the EU Artists Resale Right
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20 June, 2006
Signing of Regulations Implementing the EU Artists Resale Right
(or “Droit de Suite”) Directive
Micheal Ahern T.D., Minister for Trade and Commerce at the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment has announced the signing of Regulations transposing into Irish Law EU Directive 2001/84/EC on the resale rights of authors of original works of art. The Regulations, entitled the European Communities (Artists Resale Right), Regulations, S.I. No. 312 of 2006, came into effect on 13 June 2006.
The Regulations provide for a new right in Irish law entitling artists to payment where their art works are resold through the art trade. Minister Ahern said “The new Regulations mean that artists will share in the commercial success of their work and will be entitled to payments of up to €12,500 when individual works created by them are later resold.”
“The intention had been to implement this EU Directive through an Act of the Oireachtas. However, following consultation between my department and the Department of Arts, Sports and Tourism as well the Attorney General’s Office, I have decided that, rather than wait for all of the more complex matters to be addressed in their entirety, a more immediate two-stage approach to this transpositon should be adopted.
“I am now taking those interim steps which are open to me in the present Regulations. The intention is to revisit some aspects, such as the exemption threshold value for eligible works and the duration of the right, in the proposed Bill. While the minimum art value threshold is being set at €3,000, for now, it is intended that this will be lowered in the primary legislation. The Directive raises some other optional issues and these can only be addressed in the proposed Bill also.”
These Regulations under the European Communities Act 1972 on the mandatory provisions of the Directive will be followed, as soon as possible, with proposals on the optional and discretionary elements of the Directive being put before the Houses in the proposed Intellectual Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill. The essential benefit of this is to allow for the immediate transposition of the Directive essentials.”
Concluding, Minister Ahern said that he was pleased to see his Department working closely in this field with the Department of Arts Sport and Tourism. “It has been the long stated objective of Minister O'Donoghue to maximise the benefit of Artists Resale Right to Irish artists and their families.”
Often also called “Droit de Suite”, Artists Resale Right Schemes have operated in many European countries since the 1920's. After World War II the number of states providing artists droit de suite increased steadily. By the early 1990’s, most EU member states had had operational schemes in place. There were, however, considerable differences in the way the right was operated in the various countries. A few countries, like Ireland, did not have schemes.
Following detailed discussions a unanimous compromise was agreed in late 2001. Transposition of the Directive was set for January 2006 for living artists. Member States were allowed a derogation for deceased artists delaying implementation until January 2010.
Across the EU, the effect of the Directive is intended therefore both to introduce the right where it does not exist and make all of the Member States implementations broadly similar.
The main issues which the new Regulations provide for include:-
• artists right to benefit from the resale of his/her work (Regulation 3),
• right being non-transferrable or saleable (Regulation 4),
• minimum art value threshold set, for now, at €3,000(net of tax)(Regulation 5),
• benefit being confined, for now, to EU & EEA nationals (Regulation 6),
• establishment of a liability on the seller to pay the royalty(Regulation 7)
• artists right to information on sales (Regulation 8),
• royalty rates and bands for calculating amounts due (Regulation 9), and
• duration of resale right set, for now, at the artists lifetime (Regulation 10)
As well as revisiting the arrangement in Regulation’s 5,6 and 10, the upcoming Intellectual Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill will also deal with a number of other aspects in the EU Directive including:-
• Joint liability for payment of the royalty (Article 1.3),
• reciprocation of resale rights with third countries (Article7),
• period or ‘term of protection’(Articles 6.1 and 8.2), and
• timing arrangements for any increased term of protection (Article 8.3),
Texts of the Regulations and of the Directive are available at - http://www.entemp.ie/science/ipr/copyright.htm
For queries/further information on Artists Resale Right
Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment
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