Lê Ngọc Lâm, deputy director of the Intellectual Property Rights Department under the Ministry of Science and Technology, speaks to Tuổi Trẻ (Youth) newspaper on the importance of having trademarks during international integration
Why are Vietnamese enterprises not that interested in registering their products’ trademarks with the Intellectual Property Rights of Việt Nam (NOIP)?
Not all Vietnamese enterprises are fully aware of the advantages they will enjoy when disputes related to their products’ trademarks with those of other enterprises occur.
It’s high time to raise the awareness of intellectual property rights among organisations and individuals in business.
Enterprises should register their products or services with the NOIP. Of course, the enterprises should be given advice about the intellectual property rights before they sell their products. This step is very important as it can help enterprises avoid risks or mishaps.
Intellectual property rights are an essential element in negotiations for many free trade agreements (FTAs) in which Việt Nam has participated in. Why?
All FTAs aim to have a system of intellectual property rights at a higher level of protection, including a wider coverage of protection towards non-traditional trademarks and information transparency during the process of registration and more.
When these FTAs come into force, the Vietnamese market will be flooded with foreign products. That’s why we need to raise the quality of our products so that they can compete with foreign products.
To do this, all Vietnamese enterprises must raise their awareness of intellectual property rights, particularly the legal requirements for their products and services to avoid conflicts with those from other Vietnamese or foreign made goods. Vice versa, if their products are not registered, it is likely that their trademarks may be lost to their competitors.
Up to now many Vietnamese enterprises lack understanding of the advantages of having their products registered with Vietnamese agencies, do you agree?
Results of many studies show that in Việt Nam the value of tangible assets of Vietnamese enterprises accounts for only one quarter of each enterprise’s total assets. Meanwhile their intangible or brand names take up the rest of their assets. In some cases, they account for more than 90 per cent of the asset value of the enterprises. That’s why the development of intellectual property rights is very important in the course of development of an enterprise.
Having trademarks for their products will help enterprises to focus investment in producing products of high value which can compete.
In addition, the trademarks are intellectual property rights that can be bought and sold on the market. They have also become an important source of finance for enterprises to expand. — VNS