Brussels, 16th June 2022,

Today, the Belgian Federal Parliament adopted new rules implementing the 2019 Directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market.  

IMPALA, the European association of independent music companies, representing over 6,000 music SMEs across Europe, commented on the new rules.  

IMPALA’s Executive Chair, Helen Smith, said: “We welcome the adoption of clear rules to address the value gap created by user-upload services who were not returning enough of the value created by the consumption of works on their platforms. Here, Belgium has sticked to the text of the directive, and this will help create a faire online licensing environment that will benefit the entire music value chain. This is a clear step forward.” 

Helen Smith continued: “On the other hand, we are very concerned by the new remuneration rights introduced by this legislation. We believe these new rights are not compatible with the EU Directive – they were specifically rejected by the EU institutions at the time of adoption – and will be impractical. Labels are the artists’ main partners, the main investors in new music, and these new rules will seriously diminish their ability to take risk and invest in Belgian artists and Belgian music – a very bad timing considering that the sector was just on its way back to growth after a two-year pandemic. We sincerely hope the Belgian government will convene all stakeholders around a table to discuss the way forward.” 


IMPALA was established in 2000 and now represents nearly 6000 independent music companies. 99% of Europe’s music companies are small, micro and medium businesses and self-releasing artists. Known as the independents, they are world leaders in terms of innovation and discovering new music and artists – they produce more than 80% of all new releases and account for 80% of the sector’s jobs. IMPALA’s mission is to grow the independent music sector sustainably, return more value to artists, promote diversity and entrepreneurship, improve political access, inspire change, and increase access to finance. 

IMPALA – Independent Music Companies Association

Rue des Deux Eglises 37-39, 1000, Brussels, BELGIUM

+32 2 503 31 38