The Marrakesh Treaty

The WIPO-administered Marrakesh Treaty makes the production and international transfer of specially-adapted books for people with blindness or visual impairments easier. It does this by establishing a set of limitations and exceptions to traditional copyright law.

The Treaty was signed in Marrakesh on June 27, 2013, and came into force on September 30, 2016.

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Quotecard: 391,000 titles in accessible formats are available through the ABC Book Service for readers who are blind or have low vision
Millions of people in the world who are blin dof visually impaired will be able to read books in accessible formats.
Quotecard: Less than 10% of all published materials are accessible to blind or low vision people.

Become a member of the Marrakesh Treaty

All WIPO member states are eligible to become party to the Marrakesh Treaty. To become a member, a state must deposit an "instrument" declaring its intention with the Director General of WIPO. This instrument must be signed by the Head of State, the Head of Government or the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Legislative assistance

As part of its mission, WIPO is always ready to respond to member state requests for review of national legislation in light of treaty provisions.

Contact us to find out more.

Photo of Stevie Wondering speaking at the UN in 2016

"Help others beat the odds like I did; Join the Marrakesh Treaty."

Video: Stevie Wonder speaks about the Marrakesh Treaty at the UN (December 2016).

The Marrakesh Treaty in Action – The Accessible Books Consortium

(Photos: WIPO/Berrod)

The Accessible Books Consortium (ABC) aims to increase the number of books worldwide in accessible formats (braille, audio and large print) and to make them available to people who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print disabled.

ABC involves advocacy organizations, authors, libraries for the blind, publishers and standards bodies.

Find out more about the ABC.

Organizations supporting VIPs ("Authorized entities")

Both governmental and non-governmental organizations play an important role in providing persons who are blind or visually impaired with access to alternative format materials. In recognition of their role, the Marrakesh Treaty sets up some exceptions to copyright that allow such organizations to better serve their beneficiaries.

Become an "Authorized Entity"

The Marrakesh Treaty itself does not require an organization to fulfill any formalities or undertake specific procedures to be recognized as an "authorized entity". However, it also does not limit such measures, meaning that states can decide for themselves.

Organizations wishing to become authorized entities should therefore refer to the applicable national laws, some of which can be found in the results to the questionnaire on cross-border accessibility.

Questionnaire on cross-border accessibility

In September 2017, we sent a questionnaire to Marrakesh Treaty Contracting Parties to better understand how they are implementing the Treaty and enabling the cross-border exchange of printed works. The following results are available so far:

  • Australia PDF, Marrakesh Treaty questionnaire, response from Australia
  • Botswana PDF, Marrakesh Treaty questionnaire, response from Botswana
  • Brazil PDF, Marrakesh Treaty questionnaire, response from Brazil
  • Panama PDF, Marrakesh Treaty questionnaire, response from Panama, in Spanish (in Spanish)

Find out more about the Marrakesh Treaty

Publications

Front cover of   Helping to end the global book famine - Introduction to the Marrakesh Treaty

Helping to end the global book famine

Introduction to the Marrakesh Treaty

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