Lai Mohammed: FG mulls commercialisation of creative industry in 2020

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The Federal Government says as the nation heads into year 2020, “the successful commercialisation of the Creative industry” will be its number one priority.

Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, disclosed this in Lagos at the 6th All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA)

AFRIMA is an annual awards event established by the International Committee of AFRIMA in collaboration with African Union to reward and celebrate musical works, talents and creativity around the continent.

The minister said creative industry commercialisation would create jobs, reduce crime, be a major source of foreign exchange and reduce the nation’s dependence on oil.

Mohammed added that it would rebrand the country internationally and boost Gross Domestic Product.

“We in government are tackling all impediments to the industry from thriving.

“We are making cheaper and longer term financing available for the industry, especially for infrastructural projects, like Concert halls across the 6 geo-political zones of the country.

“This was recently announced by the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

“The collecting society issues that have plagued collective administrations have now been put on the front burner by the Attorney General.

“People who use music must pay for it, no more excuses,” he said.

Mohammed said that the government would also pay prioritise the commercialisation of the digital economy.

He said that besides making data cheaper, it would ensure that owners of content make more money from the use of their works.

Mohammed said government would clean up the advertising industry and ensure that proper measurement of content exist and are collated.

This promises to add at least N50 billion annually to the Creative Sector,” he said.

He assured that government would continue to play its role in making sure the business of music works for those who engage in it.

The minister welcomed participants and critical stakeholders in the entertainment industry across Africa that gathered at the event.

He congratulated the organisers of AFRIMA on another successful hosting of the prestigious awards as well as all nominees and awardees.

“A lot goes into making an industry.

“For the Creative industry, it is the artistes, the managers, platforms, agents, marketers, investors and of course the event organisers, which include Award events and concerts.

“So, thank you, AFRIMA, for playing your role in the explosion, development and success of first, our Afrobeat, and African Music in general,” he said.

Earlier, Head of Culture, Africa Union Commission, Angela Martins expressed gratitude to Nigeria for playing host to the continental event.

She said AFRIMA aimed at bringing Africans together, celebrate the continent’s heritage and commemorate Africa talents.

Speaking in the same vein, the President of AFRIMA, Mike Dada said that the annual event also aimed at removing the negative narrations of poverty and joblessness from Africa.

Winners were announced in 36 categories of the awards ceremony which comprise the continental and regional categories.

Nigerian Burna Boy won the African Artiste of the Year while Wiz Kid’s song, “Fever” featuring Tiwa Savage was declared Africa Song of the Year.

Awilo Longomba from DR Congo and Nigerian 2Face Idibia won the 2019 legendary award.

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