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Russian royalties to foreign artists collapse – RBK

Payments reportedly saw a sixfold drop in 2022

Royalty payments by the Russian Authors’ Society (RAO) to foreign creators of music in 2022 hit their lowest level in half a decade, business daily RBK reported on Wednesday, citing documents from the organization. 

Last year, foreign royalties totaled 20.7 million rubles (over $207,000), the lowest level since 2017 and a sixfold decrease compared to the previous year, when they amounted to $1.32 million.

Even during the pandemic year of 2020, when Russian restaurants, cafes and cinemas were shut due to Covid-related restrictions and were unable to pay music rights holders, foreign royalties still amounted to $1.25 million.


RAO is a non-governmental not-for-profit organization established by Russian artists and copyright holders for the protection of their rights on a collective basis.

In total, TV channels, radio stations, cinemas and cafes paid around $32 million to RAO in royalties to both Russian and foreign creators in 2022, according to data from the Russian Ministry of Culture, as cited by the media. This is down from around $33 million paid in the previous year.

READ MORE: Former president urges Russians to pirate Western content 

The organization attributes the massive drop in royalty payments to foreign artists to the growing demand for Russian music content in the country.


“The trend, in particular, is clearly seen from the statistics reflecting the use of music as soundtracks for commercial spaces, such as restaurants, shops and hotels,” the RAO told RBK, adding that popularity of playlists with music by Russian artists has recently surged by nearly 30%.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT’s business section

October 13, 2023 at 11:03AM


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