More than 500 licensed digital music services operate worldwide, but only one of them is available in all EU member states. The multitude of licences and collecting societies makes it hard for service providers to offer their services across the whole of Europe. A new proposal intends to overcome this by setting licensing rules that will apply across the EU. MEPs will debate and vote on the plans on Tuesday 4 February.
The proposal MEPs will vote on is an agreement with the Council to issue online music providers with licences that apply across the EU. The legislative report was written by Marielle Gallo, a French member of the EPP group.
The digital music market in Europe is expanding rapidly. Start-ups such as Deezer, Juke, Spotify, compete with established tech giants such as Apple and Amazon. In 2012 alone more than 391 million tracks were sold, according to a report by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry.
However, selling music is unncessarily costly in Europe due to the fragmentation of music rights. Complex licensing systems also discourage start-up companies from entering the digital music market.
To watch the vote and the debate live on our website, click on the link on the right.