Handicrafts Makers Say Intellectual Property Rights Law Needed to Boost Creative Industries

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Myanmar’s handicraft entrepreneurs have called on the government to speed up the process of passing legislation to protect intellectual property rights for artists, musicians and handicraft innovators.

Intellectual property plays an essential role in Myanmar, including in the arts and crafts business, said Daw Ei Ei, secretary of the Myanmar Arts and Crafts Association, speaking at a press conference in Yangon.

Government officials are holding meetings to discuss legislation for such rights and hopefully the law will emerge soon, she said, adding that protections would boost the development of creative industries.

The intellectual property rights law has been awaiting approval since it was drafted in 2014, with lawmakers needing to make several modifications to the draft law before it can be passed.

A separate challenge is that creative industries face a lack of raw materials and space for exhibitions for collective sales. They are now looking for a government subsidiary to overcome these challenges, the association’s executives said.

“We need international exhibitions and support from the government including a solution for the lack of raw materials,” said U Maung Maung Aung, managing director of Aung Wood Home Collection.

The majority of Myanmar handicraft customers are foreigners visiting Myanmar, with handicrafts being sold at every major tourist site in the country.

Producers feel that holding exhibitions with support from the government could be done to attract more foreign visitors which would also assist the hotels and tourism
sectors.

Although the market for Myanmar’s handicraft products is anecdotally reported to be going strong, exported products come under the title of forestry products and gems, which means there is a dearth of reliable data on the market situation.

 

Source: Myanmar Business Today

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