Europe's online source of news, data & analysis for professionals involved in packaged media and new delivery technologies

China to draft tougher copyright laws

The Chinese government is planning a major revamp of laws and regulations that protect intellectual property rights (IPR), according to a plan outlined last week by China's National IPR Protection Working Group Office.

Under the government's plan, 17 laws and regulations governing IPR protection will be drafted or revised during the coming year. These measures will address IPR issues related to trademarks, copyrights, patents, and customs protection, according to the plan.

In addition, the government will revise six judicial decisions in a bid to strengthen IPR protection, it said.

IPR protection has long been a source of friction in Sino-U.S. relations. Software and music piracy is widespread in China. According to the Business Software Alliance (BSA), 90 percent of software used in China is pirated. That figure puts China third, behind Vietnam and Ukraine, on a list of countries with the highest piracy rate, BSA said.

Another area of concern is movies. Pirated DVDs, including the latest Hollywood blockbusters and Western TV shows, are widely available in China. The Motion Picture Association (MPA) estimated that movie studios lost $2.7 billion due to movie piracy in China during 2005. The group said the piracy rate of movies in China was "unacceptably high" at 93 percent.

During early 2005, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) conducted a review of Chinese government efforts to increase IPR protection. While USTR noted progress in some areas, the results of the review were not encouraging. "There has not been a significant reduction in IPR infringements throughout China," USTR said in a report issued at the conclusion of that review.

"China's inadequate IPR enforcement is resulting in infringement levels at 90 percent or above for virtually every form of intellectual property," the report said.

As a result, USTR placed China on its Priority Watch List for IPR violations and invoked a World Trade Organization (WTO) agreement that requires China to provide documentation on some aspects of its IPR enforcement efforts. (Source: infoworld)

Story filed 15.03.06

Bookmark and Share

Article Comments

comments powered by Disqus