On October 9, 2022, the new copyright and related rights law entered into force in Moldova, aiming to transpose several EU directives in the field of copyright into national legislation and generally improve the copyright protection system in the country.
The law introduced an additional annual remuneration payable to performers by phonogram producers for each full year following the 50th year from the phonogram’s first lawful publication or its first communication to the public. This right cannot be waived by performers and is enforced through a designated collective management organization (CMO).
The law increases the accountability standards for CMOs by establishing clearer mechanisms for the collection and distribution of royalties. CMOs are now also required to prepare and publish an annual transparency report that includes information on their activities, collected royalties, financial statements and license refusals.
The management fees right holders pay to CMOs are now capped at 30% of the amounts distributed to right holders. No specific limit was provided for previously.
The Moldovan IPO director will appoint a CMO to collect remunerations payable to authors and copyright and related rights owners for the rights managed collectively on a mandatory basis or through extended collective management.
A section of the law is dedicated to the negotiation procedure through which CMOs and users of copyright-protected works establish the remuneration amounts payable to right holders and the conditions for their collection and payment. Specifically, this section includes provisions regarding the initiation of the negotiation procedure, the principle of good faith in negotiations, the procedure itself and the types of remunerations users should pay to CMOs (flat rates or percentages).
The law also includes new provisions regarding the use of copyright-protected subject matter by online content-sharing service providers. It is now expressly stipulated that the provider performs an act of communication to the public or an act of making available of copyright-protected works to the public when granting public access to the protected content uploaded by its users.