UK Music Tells BBC Introducing LIVE Next Election Will Be Crucial To The Future Direction Of Brexit

The panel discussion at Tobacco Dock came at the end of a week when the EU agreed a new Brexit extension to 31st January 2020

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4/11/2019: The panel discussion at Tobacco Dock came at the end of a week when the EU agreed a new Brexit extension to 31st January 2020

L-R: Steve Holden (BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat), Jimmy Blake (BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat), Tom Kiehl (UK Music) and Aliye Cornish (General Manager, Irish Baroque Orchestra)

UK Music's Deputy CEO Tom Kiehl outlined the music industry's concerns about the impact of Brexit to a packed audience at BBC Introducing LIVE following MPs decision last week to call for a General Election on 12th December 2019.

Since the EU referendum in 2016 UK Music has consistently warned that the loss of freedom of movement as a result of Brexit will have a profound impact on the ability of artists and crews to tour the EU and could damage the chances of smaller and emerging artists ability to grow fan bases as a result.

Tom also told attendees at the event that without the protections of the EU legal framework copyright law was also vulnerable following Brexit. Earlier this year the European Union agreed a new Copyright Directive which contains considerable benefits for creators that will ensure they get a better deal from services like Google's YouTube. However, the process of leaving the EU means the UK may not be bound to implement this Directive.

Tom explained that the provision within Prime Minister Boris Johnson's recent deal with the EU for there to be a transitional phase after Brexit was crucial in order to avoid the chaos of a “cliff edge” scenario yet warned further extensions to this agreement may be needed in a years time, in the event of the deal being ratified in the UK following the General Election and there being no sign of a new EU trading framework for the UK by the end of 2020.

Tom also explained to delegates that the one major upside of Brexit for music was having the new ability to strike new trading agreements with countries outside of the EU. Citing the US as an example, Tom outlined that there were significant barriers to trade in America for UK performers caused by the visa process and that there may now be the possibility to overcome this through negotiation.

Reiterating calls from UK Music CEO Michael Dugher for music creators to register to vote at the General Election on 12th December, Tom praised the work of MPs across all parties in support of music, regardless of whether they voted “leave” or “remain”, and that UK Music was preparing for all possible outcomes following the election.

The panel was organised by BBC Radio One Newsbeat and was chaired by music reporter Steve Holden. Tom spoke alongside freelance Viola player and General Manager of the Irish Baroque Orchestra Aliye Cornish, as well as Newsbeat's Jimmy Blake.

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