|Representatives of BSA and related agencies hold a press briefing on the first software piracy case brought to court in December in HCM City. — VNS File Photo
HCM CITY (VNS)— Viet Nam is one of a number of countries making robust progress in protecting computer intellectual property rights, the acting director general of the Copyright Office of Viet Nam has said.
Vu Ngoc Hoan, in an interview on the occasion of World Intellectual Property Day on April 26, said the country "had made significant strides in software copyright protection efforts over the years."
He quoted the latest study from the BSA/Software Alliance as an example, saying that Viet Nam had risen from a country with one of the highest piracy rates in the world of 92 per cent in 2004 to one that had fallen by 11 percentage points to 81 per cent in 2011.
"Though this is still high compared to the regional average of 60 per cent, Viet Nam has received recognition from interested international organisations for its efforts," he said.
Dao Anh Tuan, a programme coordinator of BSA Viet Nam, said: "The strong legal system and active efforts of enforcing activities in protecting software copyright have currently been remarkable in Viet Nam."
He added that the Vietnamese Government had been a leader in obeying software copyright when making recent purchases of software for its agencies.
Tuan also said that the BSA in June would announce a new study on software piracy, adding that he hoped the rates in Viet Nam would continue to fall.
Meanwhile, the recent win for Microsoft Viet Nam and Lac Viet Company in their lawsuit against a foreign company that was found using illegal software was an important step forward in the fight against software piracy.
After nine years of imposing only administrative fines, software piracy cases are now being handled through the courts.
Copyright spurs innovation
Activities to protect software copyright and other intellectual property rights have helped local companies become more innovative.
Vu Minh Tri, CEO of Microsoft Viet Nam, said: "Software piracy is no doubt the main impediment to development. Software thefts deter software developers and hinder business expansion."
"Intellectual property rights help create major momentum for continued investment in research and development for the quick introduction of advanced technologies to create better products to meet the ever-increasing needs of society," he added.
Hoang Van Tan, deputy director of the Intellectual Property Authority of Viet Nam under the Ministry of Science and Technology, said that the country could create an incentive to keep up innovative work if copyright protection continued.
This would give more opportunities for creative ideas to be applied to production, and would safeguard the interests of innovators.
"On the contrary, when innovation is not protected and fostered, all creation and development will dissipate," he said.
For that reason, Tan said this year Viet Nam would choose the topic "Intellectual Property Spurs Innovation" for an action week to be organised in response to Intellectual Property Day on April 26.
"In every activity from research to production, innovation and creation is needed. Without innovation, there will be no development," he said. — VNS