Monday, February 19, 2018

Customs lags in counterfeit fight

IP News from KENFOXThe deputy director of the General Department of Customs, Vu Ngoc Anh, talked with Thoi Bao Kinh Te Viet Nam (Vietnam Economic Times) about the implementation of Intellectual Property rights in Vietnam.

How has the customs department enforced Intellectual Property rights (IPR) since Vietnam joined the World Trade Organisation?

As a full member of the World Trade Organisation, Vietnam has been implementing international commitments, of which implementation of IPR play an important role in the country’s sustainable economic development.

In fact, IPR implementation in the customs sector has been going on for a long time with programmes designed to control smuggling and fake goods.

However, the implementation has not been well co-ordinated between concerned offices. The capacity of IPR enforcement bodies at the local level is also still insufficient.

Policies to seize fake goods have not been implemented. There is no system of intelligence to prevent IPR violations in the long-term.

What plans does the department have to solve these problems?

Promoting co-operation among relevant offices is the most effective solution.

IPR implementation has gained more prominence among organisations, business and individuals. Vietnamese legislative bodies always attach much importance to adjusting and perfecting legal documents and policies to match with international rules that Vietnam has committed itself to, with an aim to create a clear legal environment to help effectively implement IPR.

The introduction of the Law on Intellectual Property rights last July reflected the efforts of the Vietnamese Government to focus on IPR implementation.

The customs sector has been setting up a programme of co-operation between the customs office and other relevant offices such as border patrol, economic policing and market management.

Customs has also enhanced co-operation with professional associations in sectors like seafood, ceramics and tobacco.

Honestly, the co-operation has been insufficient so IPR implementation has been ineffective.

The customs sector has been looking for support from the European Union and the US. Recently, a seminar on the management of risks in IPR implementation was an avenue for EU and US experts to share their experiences in IPR implementation in their countries.

What effects do IPR violations have on the Vietnamese economy?

Losses caused by IPR violations are huge. It impacts negatively not only on investors, but also on the whole economy.

So far, there are no official statistics on losses caused by IPR violations in Vietnam. But the IPR violations, which have occurred widely in the country, worries software and information technology investors.

The losses were also suffered by consumers who have to use fake and pirated products.

Customs will set specific measures to prevent IPR violations.

The violations have occurred all over the world. Prevention of IPR violations is a long-term fight.

Customs will focus on products which suffer from frequent IPR violations such as CDs and software.

The sector has set a target of completing a management system by 2010 to control IPR implementation.

 

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