Join us on July 12 to Celebrate 10 years since the Adoption of the Marrakesh Treaty!

June 30, 2023

On July 12, 2023, WIPO member states and other stakeholders will come together to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the adoption of the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled. The Marrakesh Treaty is WIPO’s fastest growing treaty and currently has 93 contracting parties covering 119 countries. It has changed the lives of tens of millions of people who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print disabled around the world.

Stevie Wonder addressing delegates at the closing of WIPO’s Diplomatic Conference, hosted by the Kingdom of Morocco from June 17 to 28, 2013 (Photo: WIPO)

WIPO’s Director General and key stakeholders will reflect on the impact of this humanitarian treaty and how it has made a difference in the lives of people who are print disabled around the world. The hybrid program is as follows:

Welcoming Address:

  • Mr. Daren Tang, Director General, World Intellectual Property Organization


  • Ms. Martine Abel-Williamson, President, World Blind Union
  • Ms. Praveena Sukhraj-Ely, Principal Officer and Treasurer, International Council for Education of People with Visual Impairment
  • Mr. Dang Hoai Phúc, Executive Director, Sao Mai Vocational and Assistive Technology Center for the Blind
  • Mr. Hugo Setzer, CEO, Manual Moderno and Past President, International Publishers Association
  • Mr. Tony Bradman, International Authors Forum, author of “Dilly the Dinosaur” and “Viking Boy”


  • Ms. Monica Halil Lövblad, Head, Accessible Books Consortium Secretariat

Date: Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Time: 9.30 a.m. CEST (Geneva time)

Location: WIPO Conference Hall, Geneva, Switzerland

Streaming Link:

Interpretation available: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish

A celebratory luncheon will be held for delegates attending the WIPO Assemblies on Thursday, July 13, 2023 in the lobby of WIPO’s AB Building.

Delegates at the Diplomatic Conference applauding the adoption of the Marrakesh Treaty. (Photo: WIPO)


According to a 2017 study published in The Lancet, approximately 253 million people are blind or visually impaired world-wide. Nearly 90% of these are resident in developing countries, where the World Blind Union (WBU) estimates that people who are blind have only a one in ten chance of going to school or getting a job. A lack of accessible books remains a very real barrier to getting an education and leading an independent, productive life.

About ABC

The Accessible Books Consortium (ABC) is a public-private partnership led by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) that brings together all of the key players – organizations representing people who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print-disabled, authors, publishers, collective management organizations, libraries and other authorized entities, as well as standards bodies. ABC was established in June 2014 to implement the goals of the Marrakesh Treaty. Through an effective international alliance of relevant state and non-state actors, ABC seeks to increase, and distribute, the number of books worldwide in accessible formats - such as braille, audio, e-text and large print.

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About WIPO

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is the global forum for intellectual property policy, services, information and cooperation. A specialized agency of the United Nations, WIPO assists its 193 member states in developing a balanced international IP legal framework to meet society's evolving needs. It provides business services for obtaining IP rights in multiple countries and resolving disputes. It delivers capacity-building programs to help developing countries benefit from using IP. And it provides free access to unique knowledge banks of IP information.