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South Sudan Copyright Design Peer Exchange with Kenya and Uganda

Participants in the UNESCO meeting  in Juba, 26 May 2021 ©UNESCO

UNESCO and the European Union are supporting the Ministry of Culture, Museums and Natural Heritage in South Sudan with the development of the cultural and creative industries sector through peer-to-peer learning. Experts from Kenya and Uganda Copyright Offices shared their experiences in a two-day meeting with South Sudanese national stakeholders from 26 to 28 May 2021 organized by the UNESCO Office in Juba. The meeting brought together key actors in the cultural and creative industries (CCIs), government Ministries in South Sudan as a national team to participate in the national consultation and share in Kenya and Uganda experience to support the CCIs develop a national copyright bill to support the CCIs.

Hon. Nadia Aropi Dudi, South Sudan’s Minister of Culture, Museums and National Heritage opened the meeting. She appreciated EU/UNESCO for the support to culture sector in South Sudan. She underscored the importance of cultural and heritage matters stating it as a cross-cutting matter that must be given the priority it deserves.

Public participation is a key factor in the achievement of viable legal framework for the sector.
Hon. Nadia Aropi Dudi, Minister of Culture, Museums and National Heritage of South Sudan

She encouraged the national team to benefit from the experiences of Kenya and Uganda to develop a strong legal framework to strengthen the CCIs by ensuring direct benefits to artists. “It is our role as a Ministry to follow up the procedural steps with the cabinet and the parliament for it to become a law governing the cultural and creative industries in South Sudan” she added.

South Sudan is one of dozen countries benefitting from a new EU/UNESCO capacity building programme entitled “Supporting new regulatory frameworks to strengthen the cultural and creative industries and promote South-South cooperation.” The programme aims to support developing countries with: the development of regulatory frameworks (laws, strategies, policies and measures) for the Cultural and Creative Industries (CCIs), including intellectual property rights related to CCIs; strengthen skills and capacities to support long-term cultural policy development and implementation that support the CCIs; and create peer-to-peer mechanisms to strengthen institutional capacities for the CCIs through South-South cooperation activities. The EU/UNESCO project in South Sudan is supporting the development of a national copyright policy for the CCIs. The project will also support nation building efforts as well as capacity building of its national authorities through ensuring that the copyright policy is created in a participatory manner. 

The two-day peer-to-peer exchange meeting enabled the South Sudan national team to learn from the experiences of the Kenya Copyright Board and Uganda Registration Service Bureau and neighboring rights system. They shared information on: the introduction of an IP framework in Uganda and Kenya; development of Copyright Legal Frameworks; collective management; protection for traditional knowledge; and enforcement of copyright. Insights from this exchange will be considered by the national team elaborating South Sudan’s first ever copyright bill.

While South Sudan is a party to three UNESCO Cultural Conventions, it is important to enact the copyright bill to protect cultural and creative industries and ratify other related treaties to achieve a more complete normative framework.
Mr. Julius Banda, UNESCO Representative to South Sudan

It is important that we see this exchange as a safe haven, where you can share experiences, challenges and results from your own experience in a positive environment”, said Ms. Melika Medici Caucino,  EU/UNESCO project officer at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris.

For more information on the UNESCO 2005 Convention for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, which South Sudan ratified in 2016, please see: https://en.unesco.org/creativity/convention