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Brussels, 20 January 2012

Statement by Commissioner Michel Barnier on intellectual property rights and online piracy

Brussels, 20 January 2012 - The Commission is closely monitoring developments in our Member States and other countries in the field of intellectual property rights and online piracy, including the current debate in the US Congress on proposed legislation. I myself am currently working with the Commission services to revise the Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement directive. It is the Commission's intention to propose a revised directive by the end of 2012.

As a principle, theft of property cannot be tolerated.

My overall objective is to make sure that new online business models can emerge in Europe with a solid legal certainty for providers and consumers. We want to enable creators to offer their works over the internet and protect them against the theft of their works.

The European Commission will facilitate licensing of music and other works by establishing a level playing field in the single market for collective management of rights. We are working on a proposal for this spring.

Through its revision of the Enforcement Directive, the Commission will ensure that operators that solicit copyright infringements by individuals and derive profit from this are rapidly identified and sanctioned by the courts in the Member States. We must inhibit businesses from making money on the back of rights holders in order to allow for sustainable business models to develop their legal offers on the internet.

More information on the Directive on enforcement of intellectual property rights:

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