Vietnam urged to do more to reduce intellectual property piracy

TN News

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Vietnam has made significant progress in intellectual property protection since 2004, but experts expect more from the country with the second-highest rate of illegal software downloads in Southeast Asia.

The Business Software Alliance (BSA) estimated in 2011 that the piracy rate had declined to 81 percent from 92 percent in 2004.

Every percentage point is worth US$87 million in commercial revenues, the US-based industry group said. The country's gross domestic product at purchasing power parity was $322.72 billion last year according to the World Bank.

Tarun Sawney, director of BSA in Asia-Pacific region, was quoted by online newspaper Dan Tri as saying the piracy rate is no longer among the highest in the world and Vietnam has made strong progress in decreasing unlicensed and illegal digital content.

But the rate is still higher than the average rate of 60 percent in Southeast Asia, he said. Among the regional nations, Vietnam has the second highest, preceded by Indonesia with 86 percent.

Vu Ngoc Hoan, acting head of the Copyright Office of Vietnam, said the country will continue the fight piracy culture as it hopes to bring the rate down to the regional level.

His office's inspectors so far this year checked computers at 64 firms nationwide, imposing fines totaling VND1.3 billion ($61,560), Hoan said without mentioning how many firms were fined for using pirated content.

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