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Aquino vows help, support to embattled music industry

/ 12:07 AM March 20, 2014

President Benigno Aquino III tells delegates at The Pinoy Music Summit that his administration is recognizing music’s integral role in Philippine culture. He said the government fully supports efforts to boost the local music industry. VIDEO/INQUIRER.net’s RYAN LEAGOGO

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MANILA, Philippines – Bolstering demand, improving supply and addressing leakages in the country’s music industry were among the many issues discussed by President Benigno Aquino III on Wednesday during The Pinoy Music Summit.

Aquino told artists and other members of the industry that it was an opportune time to have a comprehensive discussion on the condition of and challenges faced by the sector.

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President Benigno Aquino III INQUIRER.net/Ryan Leagogo

“Ano nga ba ang tunay na estado ng industriya ng musika sa bansa? Ano ang implikasyon ng teknolohiya at ng new media dito? Paano ba makakatulong ang pamahalaan sa inyo, at sa tinatayang 346,000 na Pilipinong nagtatrabaho sa industriya ng sining at musika?” he said.

(What is the true state of the country’s music industry? What are the implications of technology and new media? How can the government help you, and the 346,000 Filipinos working in the industry of culture and music.)

The Pinoy Music Summit, held in Manila, is the first event of its kind. Organized by various music organizations, it aims to chart the state of the industry and come up with solutions to address issues and problems burdening the sector.

A document released by the summit organizers said that since the Philippine recording industry’s peak in 1999, album sales have dwindled from P2.7 billion to P699 million in 2010 or a 75 percent drop in revenues within a decade.

It also showed the dominance of foreign over local music.

Technological advances and emergence of independent artists further result in various models of marketing and production.

All these, according to The Pinoy Music Summit, result in an environment not conducive to bringing local music to the mainstream market.

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Recognizing music’s integral role in Philippine culture, Aquino said the government fully supports efforts to boost the local music industry.

At one point in his speech, he recalled the signing of Executive Order 255 by his mother and former president Corazon Aquino.

“Bilang pagpupugay sa kakayahan ng mga Pilipino, pinirmahan po ng aking ina ang Executive Order 255 noong 1987. Ang layunin po nito: ipalaganap ang sarili nating musika sa pamamagitan ng pagpapatugtog sa radyo ng hindi bababa sa apat na kantang Pilipino kada oras,” he said.

(In recognition of the musical abilities of Filipinos, my mother signed Executive Order 255 in 1987. It aimed to promote our own music by playing on the radio at least four Filipino songs per hour.)

Aquino explained he further bolstered the law by ordering the National Telecommunications Commission to ensure its implementation.

He also boasted the Optical Media Board’s anti-piracy campaign, which from 2011 to 2013 resulted in the confiscation of 9,100,000 pirated optical media products worth P3 billion

“Sa pakikipagtulungan din po ng OMB sa PNP at BOC, umabot na sa 2,705 na establisimyento na nagtitinda ng piniratang produkto ang nainspeksyon at nagkaroon ng clearing operations,” he said.

(With the coordination of the OMB with the Philippine National Police and the Bureau of Customs, up to 2,705 establishments selling pirated products have already been inspected and subjected to clearing operations.)

However, Aquino admitted there was still a lot to do to accelerate the progress of the local music industry.

He pointed out that even other countries are also suffering a decline in music sales.

A self-confessed music lover, the President said the sector will have to learn how to deal with digital media and the demand of younger generations for single tracks sold online.

“Yong mga nag-e-experience ng growth ngayon ay ‘yong mga nakinig kung ano ba ang hinahanap ng merkado nila–hindi pinahirapan, hindi pinadamot ang produkto nila na gustong ibenta naman,” he said.

(Those experiencing growth are the ones who listened to the needs of the market – didn’t make it difficult, didn’t restrict their products.)

Originally posted at 4:52 pm | Wednesday, March 19, 2014

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