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IRIS 1995-1:Extra

Commonwealth of Independent States

Covenant on Cooperation in Copyright Matters

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Andrei Richter

Moscow Media Law and Policy Centre

The Covenant on cooperation of Member States of the Commonwealth of Independent States in the matters of copyright and neighbouring rights was signed at the session of the Council of the Heads of Governments of the CIS in Moscow on 24 September 1993. It contains 7 articles.

Its aim was to clarify the copyright situation among the states that had made up the former Soviet Union.

This "Moscow agreement" declared that all signatory countries considered themselves bound by the 1952 Universal Copyright Convention (UCC) as of the date the USSR had joined it (27 May 1973) and would confirm this state with UNESCO, which administered the UCC (Article 1). It gave the reason as both the UNESCO and the U.S. Copyright Office consider all CIS nations to be UCC (1952) members as of 27 May 1973.

The covenant also specified that the treaty states would also apply the UCC among themselves for works published before 27 May 1973 if those works had been copyrighted before that date according to the national laws of the successor states. This provision was subject to the rule of the shorter term (Article 2). The intent of the Moscow agreement was to avoid a result that older Soviet works would be copyrighted in only some of the successor states, but would become part of the public domain others.

The Covenant is open for signature by other post-Soviet countries.

References
Соглашение о сотрудничестве государств — участников Содружества Независимых Государств в области охраны авторского права и смежных прав RU
 http://merlin.obs.coe.int/redirect.php?id=10997
 
  Covenant on cooperation of Member States of the Commonwealth of Independent States in the matters of copyright and neighbouring rights