The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed has said that the successful commercialization of the creative industry is the number one priority in 2020 which will create jobs, reduce crime, be a major source of foreign exchange and thereby reduce the dependence on oil, rebrand the country internationally and boost the GDP.
He made this known at the 6th African Music Award (AFRIMA) 2019 in Lagos on Saturday.
He said government are tackling all impediments to the industry 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, as recently announced by the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
He noted that 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.
“The other big issue for commercialization is the digital economy – data must be cheaper and owners of content must make more money from the use of their works. “I am sure you have been following the announcements by my colleague, the Minister of Communications, on this”, he said.
He added that the government is also cleaning up the advertising industry and making sure proper measurement of content exist and are collated.
“This promises to add at least 50 billion Naira annually to the Creative Sector. We will continue to play our role in government and make sure the business of music works for all hard working folks who engage in it.
“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.
He congratulated the organizers of AFRIMA on another successful hosting of this prestigious awards. “Judging by the giant strides of the industry locally and internationally, and the popularity that it is generating, we are probably only just about getting into its glory years”, he said.