The SABC has announced that it will increase music royalties for local artists from 3.2% to 4%.
The hike will apply to music played on its radio stations and TV channels.
The good news comes a week after the public broadcaster vowed to play 90% local music.
Earlier this year, Don Laka caused a stir on social media when he lambasted the SABC for paying millions to play international music, while neglecting local artists.
Several artists supported his outcry, but criticised the musician for how he handled the situation.
A few months later it seems SABC officials are finally sitting up and taking notice.
SABC’s Chief Operations Officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng said in a statement: “This move is meant to stimulate the music industry, through creating jobs and unearthing new talent. The SABC also wants to restore the dignity of creatives to move away from a situation of creatives in the music industry dying as paupers. The SABC will set a budget to honour SA music legends such as Babsy Mlangeni, Steve Kekana and Letta Mbuli and those that have passed on amongst others for their contribution to the industry. This once- off recognition payment will be in July.”
The move will ensure more money goes back into the pockets of SA artists who have been getting a raw deal all these years.
Better late than never!
Sadly, the new royalty fee will only apply to artists who are registered with the Association of Independent Record Companies , Southern African Music Rights Organisation, South African Music Performance Rights Association, Independent Music Performance Rights Association.
Also putting a damper on the good news, is the fact that dozens of artists are reportedly still owed millions in unpaid royalties.