Pakistan: Pakistan signs Marrakesh Treaty for visually impaired access to published works1

The Marrakesh Treaty was established and adopted in Morocco in 2013 to address the widespread problem known as a "book famine," where few books are published in formats accessible to those who are blind or visually impaired.

Pakistan is the latest country to formally join the Marrakesh Treaty, administered by the WIPO. President Dr. Arif Alvi signed the accession on December 12, 2023 in a special ceremony in Islamabad, Pakistan.

The treaty's signing will provide access to published work for people with visual disability. This is achieved by actively promoting the production and distribution of accessible formats, including large print, braille, as well as audiobooks. The facility otherwise has been restricted due to the Copyright Ordinance of 1962 which does not provide necessary provisions for compulsory printing and reproduction of braille and audio versions.

The treaty empowers authorized entities, such as organizations related to visually challenged persons and libraries, to organize their accessible collection and flourish their collection, so as to provide better benefit to the challenged persons, giving them better and wider access to knowledge.

With this very move, Pakistan is proud to announce that it will be granting easier access to knowledge to around 10 million people in the country.


1. Pakistan Joins Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access of Visually Impaired Persons to Published Work | IPO Pakistan (2023.12.12)

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