The long-awaited fund to support Arts and Culture in Malawi has been launched in Lilongwe amid concerns that artists are not supported.
In her remarks Ms Maureen Masamba, Chairperson of the COSOMA Board said access to funding has been a major challenge faced by players in the copyright and cultural industries. Therefore, the establishment of the Copyright Fund by COSOMA with Government’s support is another step towards addressing the same following successful launch of the Arts Savings and Credit Cooperative (SACCO) in 2017.
” It is pleasing to note that the operationalization of the Fund is in line with pillar number 3 enabler 5 of the Malawi National Transformation Agenda, 2063 stipulating that the creative industries have a lot of potential to transform the economy from the tourism aspect through job creation and generation of income and foreign exchange. Therefore, the importance of the Copyright Fund cannot be overemphasized as it will be key in addressing strategic issues faced by the creative industries which include production, promotion and marketing of artistic and cultural products and services at both local and international market,” Masamba said.
Masamba further said COSOMA used to administer the Cultural Support Scheme Project with funding from the Royal Norwegian Embassy. After it came to an end, COSOMA felt it necessary to establish its own fund. It is, therefore, envisaged that the Copyright Fund will provide a committed mechanism for COSOMA to financially support the creative industry in line with its mandate of promoting and protecting creativity.
In his remarks, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Wildlife Hon. Dr Michael Usi (Guest of Honour) urged those in authority of the Fund to take the funding to the targeted people and let them benefit from it.
“Let the fund have lungs to breathe, let it grow and let people who live in rural areas benefit from it. We have well talented people in the rural areas, let’s promote their talent,” Usi emphasized.
COSOMA Board is confident that through continued collaboration with all stakeholders, the Fund will achieve more by developing even a stronger and robust creative industry.