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Intellectual property protection drives Vietnamese competitiveness

Date: 14-02-2020 by: Banca IP Law Firm

Intellectual property protection drives Vietnamese competitiveness

Vietnam's score in intellectual property (IP) protection increased the most of all Asian economies, according to U.S. Chamber International IP Index.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Global Innovation Policy Center (GIPC) released its annual report last week, conducted by U.K-based consultancy Pugatch Consilium.

The 8th edition, "Art of the Possible," maps the IP ecosystem in 53 global economies, representing over 90 percent of global GDP, by using 50 indicators across nine categories of protection - patents, copyrights, trademarks, design rights, trade secrets, commercialization of IP assets, enforcement, systemic efficiency, and membership and ratification of international treaties.

With an overall score of 18.31 out of 45 (36.62 percentage of overall index score), Vietnam is ranked 42nd in the world and 12th out of 15 Asian economies.

However, the report reflected that Vietnam progressed the most in Asia with 5.93 percent higher than in the previous edition last year, thanks to legislation that increase damages awarded for IP infringement and participation in a number of international IP treaties.

It also pointed out Vietnam does well in three key areas - basic IP protection and enforcement framework with stronger penalties for commercial-scale infringement, growing integration with international IP platforms like the E.U.-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement, and long-standing efforts to coordinate IP enforcement.

The report lauded Vietnam for employing a comprehensive and strategic approach to its national IP policy by recognizing the link between the provision and protection of IP rights and the creation, commercialization, and development of IP assets. It applauded the nation for increasing the volume of IP registration across the board and amplifying both exploitation and commercialization.

It stated the successful IP strategy would help Vietnam "enhance national competitiveness and promote economic, cultural and social development." 

However, the nation still lacks adequate protection of life science patents with a challenging enforcement environment, gaps in copyright protection, including a lack of measures to address online infringements, high physical counterfeiting rates and rampant online infringement, alongside generally poor enforcement with penalties insufficient in practice and administrative inaction.

In Asia, Vietnam only placed above Thailand at 45th, Indonesia at 46th and Pakistan at 51st.

The U.S. retains its top position, followed by the U.K., France, Germany and Sweden who dropped from third to fifth place in the latest ranking.

Japan is ranked sixth in the world and is the only country in Asia to make the top 10, followed by the Netherlands (7th), Ireland (8th), Switzerland (9th) and Spain (10th).

China, the world’s second-largest economy, came in 28th place while India, the world’s second-most populous country, ranked 40th.

The bottom three economies on the IP Index are Pakistan, Algeria and Venezuela.

Art of the Possible stated economies would greatly benefit from effective IP protection by attracting more foreign investment, producing more innovative output, enjoying greater global competitiveness, as well as higher-skilled human capital.

Since January 1, 2018 copyright infringement has been a criminal offense in Vietnam. Corporations found to have broken this law could face a maximum fine of VND3 billion ($129,000) and business suspension of up to two years.

Source: Vnexpress