An agreement on software copyright protection was reached in Hanoi on August 26, marking a step-forward in cooperation between government agencies and local and foreign professional associations in the fight against copyright infringement.
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) to this effect was signed by Tarun Sawney, Business Software Alliance (BSA)’s Director for Anti-Piracy in Asia; Pham Tan Cong, General Secretary of the Vietnam Software Association; Vu Manh Chu, Director of the Copyright Office of Vietnam; and Vu Xuan Thanh, Chief Inspector of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
Under the MoU, a campaign will be launched to increase the business community’s awareness of computer software copyright along with more frequent inspection and stricter punishment of violations.
Chief Inspector Thanh said his task mission is proposing to increase the maximum fine level on a software copyright infringement to 500 million VND from the current 30 million VND.
According to the MoU, BSA will assist government agencies in enforcing the Law on Copyright by training personnel and sharing experiences in making and implementing policies on protection of software copyright.
BSA will also help in setting up a hotline to provide information and create favourable conditions for the public to denounce software copyright violations.
Thanh said the rate of computer software copyright violation has dropped markedly over recent years but remained high. It is expected to drop to 82 percent in 2008 from 85 percent in 2007, 88 percent in 2006 and 92 percent in 2004.
A research conducted by IDC, a leading market forecasting company in information technology, says if the rate of software copyright violations drops by 10 percentage points in the next four years, the software industry will get additional earnings of 623 million USD.