The media and business are one of the country’s most innovative and creative industries. Notwithstanding its suitable size, Latvia provides its business end-users with around 240 newspapers, encompassing national and international daily as well as relatively powerful industry players supplying Russian-language products. Latvia has more than 20 national and regional television companies, that are in line with the competing radio industry and the steadily growing movie sector. With the global expansion of mobile products, national ad agencies have been attracting massive investments targeted at web-based ads and video advertising on mobile devices.
The national Law on the Press and Other Mass Media governs the publishing industry. The Law includes regulations that guide organizations specializing in certain services, such as the rights and obligations of journalists, under the laws governing the status and operations of the mass media. The Law on the Press and Other Mass Media proposes that news organizations have the right to not identify the source of information. Exceptions to this right can only be made by the court or prosecutors in the case of the protection of an individual’s or society’s fundamental interests, and only following the proportionality principle.
The national Copyrights Law establishes a framework for copyright protection. It also establishes what is covered by copyright and oversees the rights to royalties claims. The Latvian writers’ society AKKA / LAA (Copyright and Communication Consulting Agency/Latvian Authors Association) and Latvian Performers’ and Producers’ Association are responsible for the collective management of economic rights, as well as the effective protection of copyrights and royalties (LaIPA).
In Latvia, royalties are regarded as taxable income. Under the supervision of the State Revenue Service, both the beneficiary and the person paying the royalties are responsible for complying with tax and mandatory contribution rules.
Royalty payments are tax-free in the specific State if the beneficial owner of the payment is a firm or a permanent establishment in another Member State. The European Union Council Directive on a Common System of Taxation Applicable to Interest and Royalty Payments made between Associated Companies of Different Member States provides for tax exemption on royalty payments in several conditions. Royalty payments are exempt from any taxes in the particular State if the beneficial owner of the payment is a firm or a permanent establishment in another Member State, according to Directive 2003/49/EC, often known as the EU Interest & Royalties Directive.