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China hopes to duplicate world's music profits

Updated: 2013-03-12 09:47
By Mu Qian (China Daily)

China hopes to duplicate world's music profits

Although considered the most popular Chinese pop duo, Phoenix Legend still has limited international influence. Guo Guoquan / For China Daily

For the first time in 14 years, the global recorded music industry grew in 2012. The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry's annual Digital Music Report announces a rise in revenues by an estimated 0.3 per cent in 2012, to $16.5 billion.

While the worldwide industry celebrates the first year of growth since 1998, Chinese counterparts are wondering when China's recorded music industry will step out of the doldrums.

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According to the 2012 Report on Chinese Pop Music Market released by the China Record Working Committee, "the physical market has practically disappeared, while the new digital music market has not given record companies their due shares The traditional recording industry is in great depression."

The report says that the revenue of physical format sales in China has declined 95 percent, from 1.22 billion yuan ($196 million) in 2003 to 60 million yuan in 2010, the latest available statistics.

"The problem with the Chinese recording industry is that the cost of piracy is too low while that of protecting copyright is too high," says Zang Yanbin, president of China Record Working Committee. "That's why capital is reluctant to enter the industry and no good works are coming out."

The Chinese digital music market amounted to 1.26 billion yuan in 2011, with 280 billion units downloaded and streamed. The China Record Working Committee contends that music copyright owners should get royalty of 632 million yuan, but the actual income was only 99 million yuan due to piracy, lack of a fair system of profit distribution, and inefficiency of the collecting agencies.

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