Violations of intellectual property increasing

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VCN – Counterfeiting and goods infringing intellectual property rights (IP) appear in many aspects and in many categories of goods with increasingly sophisticated violations.

2059 5725 bao dong do ve cac hanh vi xam pham quyen so huu tri tue 4 - Violations of intellectual property increasing
The seminar. Photo: Vietnam Directorate of Market Surveillance

These are the contents discussed at the seminar “Improving the capacity of the Market Surveillance Agency in handling intellectual property rights (IPR) infringement by administrative measures” jointly held by the Vietnam Directorate of Market Surveillance and the National Economics University on the morning of October 22.

Many violations in the field of IPR

At the seminar, Director General of the Vietnam Directorate of Market Surveillance Tran Huu Linh said that market surveillance agency is the core force of the Government in handling IPR infringement by administrative measures. During its operation, the market surveillance agency has three main tasks: anti-smuggling; anti-trade fraud and anti-counterfeiting and anti-IPR infringement.

“In task performance, not only the market surveillance agency but also other forces face many difficulties because counterfeiting and goods infringing IPR appear in many aspects and many categories of goods with increasingly sophisticated violations,” said Mr. Tran Huu Linh.

According to the director general, fake trademarks and brands; counterfeiting in quality and measurement, are common violations in in petroleum and fertilizer products. Therefore, to stabilize the market, protect the rights and interests of consumers and legitimate businesses, fight counterfeiting and infringing goods will be the main tasks of the entire sector from now to 2030.

According to Ms. Nguyen Nhu Quynh, Deputy Chief Inspector in charge of the Inspectorate of the Ministry of Science and Technology, although competent authorities nationwide have strengthened inspection and control, violations of intellectual property rights have been increasing and become common at the red alert level.

Statistics from Program 168 on coordination to prevent and combat IPR infringements show that 1,300 cases of IPR infringement were sanctioned with a total fine of over VND25 billion in 2020.

Common violations included trading in counterfeit goods, goods infringing IPR on the network environment and across borders; unfair competition, trademark imitations; domain names, countries; trade names, business names; invention rights, utility solutions and business secrets.

In particular, during the Covid-19 pandemic, violations of IPR have increased in items for anti-pandemic work such as masks, protective clothing and medical gloves.

Ms. Nguyen Nhu Quynh said that currently 95% of IPR infringement cases are processed by administrative measures. However, many people said that it is necessary to reduce administrative sanctions and switch to judicial measures to match the global trend.

Improving capacity and in-depth knowledge of IPR

According to the Director of the Policy and Legal Department, the Vietnam Directorate of Market Surveillance Kieu Duong, the capacity of market surveillance officers in this field is the physical and intellectual ability of each officer in the overall use of knowledge and skills and attitudes to complete assigned tasks.

In recent years, the situation of IPR infringement has become complicated and has been increasing.

Eurocham Whitebook 2020 states: “In Vietnam in recent years, we have witnessed an explosion of online copyright infringements related to industrial property rights. This situation will get out of control in the coming years if Vietnam does not quickly take urgent and effective measures.”

Despite many efforts, the enforcement capacity to handle IPR infringements of agencies in general, including the market surveillance agency and has not been achieved as expected by the Government and people.

It is forecast that in the future, IPR infringements will expand. Therefore, officers in charge of this task must improve their capacity and in-depth knowledge to be ready to promptly cope with increasingly sophisticated violations.

Along with that, the market surveillance agency should perfect the legal framework, especially measures to handle administrative violations of IPR infringements.

Moreover, the market surveillance agency should equip means and facilities to create favorable conditions for officers to perform their duties. In particular, technology must be applied to the inspection, control and identification of violations to thoroughly solve problems.

By Quang Hung/ Huyen Trang

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