Senior Partner Le Quang Vinh, Bross & Partners, speaking at the studio of the Hanoi Television together with Mr. Le Ngoc Anh – Director of Hanoi city’s Department of Science and Technology on the occasion of the world intellectual property day of 2019 themed “Reach for Gold: IP and Sports – Roads to the Gold Awards: Intellectual Property and Sports”
MC asked: From the perspective of a lawyer, what do you have any comment on the content of this year's intellectual property day?
Attorney Vinh replied: This year is the 19th year since 2000 - the first year the WIPO and the international community used April 26 every year as an intellectual property day with the purpose of raising awareness, understanding and propagating social economic significance of intellectual property to the public and the nation, as well as to encourage all entities in the society to participate in the creation of intellectual property. Each year has a different topic. This year the theme of world intellectual property day relates to sport: "Reach for Gold: IP and Sports" (Road to the Gold Award: Intellectual Property and Sports) and the spirit of "Faster, Stronger, Higher".
I think that sport is not only a form of entertainment but also an entertainment industry, contributing significantly to the national budget, contributing to the glory, friendship and strong connection with the world through many examples such as great images, bold spirit of self-respect of the nation when the U23 football team of Vietnam for the first time in history made many great sports miracles when participating in many tournaments held in the region of ASEAN and Asia. We have been continuing to have many businesses participating in this market from manufacturers of sports equipment, clothes to sports media companies and a massive system of newspapers and radio. They are not only contributing to the beauty of sport, bringing spiritual food to the public but also contributing to the promotion of our country's image, as well as creating more economic value for the country. Therefore, linking intellectual property with sport as the theme of this year is a new, interesting and emotional message.
MC asked: dear sir, Le Quang Vinh, you must have witnessed many intellectual property disputes. According to those cases, what is the reason and why do businesses still face that situation?
Attorney Vinh answered: Dispute of intellectual property rights that is inherently a natural phenomenon, indispensable and international one, is still taking place daily every hour in the world. It could be a giant dispute worth up to billions of dollars like a dispute between the world's largest technology firms. For example the case Apple vs. Samsung is related to patent for invention and patent for industrial design of smartphone, or a dispute worth tens of billions of dollars between the two giants Apple vs. Qualcomm wherein Apple accused Qualcomm - the world's largest chip maker for iPhones - of overpricing royalty fee in exchange of use of patents related to Qualcomm-owned chips. In Vietnam, recently we witnessed two copyright disputes that are heating up forums and public opinion: Tinh Hoa Bac Bo and Than Dong Dat Viet.
There are many causes of intellectual property disputes, but 5 out of them are fundamental:
1. The deepest cause is that the world has never been able to find a balance between the rights and interests amongst holders of intellectual property rights, competitors' freedom of competition and the right to access information by general public. In other words, intellectual property has never ceased to argue
2. Insufficient legal awareness and understanding of parties to contracts for exploitation and use of intellectual property assets leading to indentures under contracts signed with many preliminary terms open, sketchy, or not clear enough in determining the scope of rights and obligations of the parties
3. The law or regulations are not clear or easy to implement immediately, as well as the law is too slow compared to the changes in real life that is much impacted by information technology, internet, and AI technology, which has fundamentally made many things, especially science and technology, social networks, virtual worlds change fast
4. The capacity and understanding of the contingent of intellectual property protection enforcement officers and agencies is still limited, uneven and lacks a specialized court system on intellectual property leading to the fact that many disputes are handled very slowly, causing a lack of confidence in the enforcement system for the claimants
5. Measures and penalties for IPR infringements in practice are often much lighter than the penalties stated in the legal documents system or even for many years there have been no criminal cases regarding offense for infringement of industrial property rights, or copyright or related rights although the phenomenon of infringement, counterfeiting, piracy is still widespread, etc., As a result, the target of deterrence and remote prevention of legal regulations become limited
Here we should approach the understanding of an intellectual property dispute in its own connotation, meaning that the parties to a dispute involved in one or more of the intellectual property assets that each party thinks they have the rights being violated by the others. These circumstances is completely different from those of explicit infringement of intellectual property rights that needs to the State power though its IPR enforcement agencies, eg. piracy of computer programs, scientific and artistic literary works, intellectual property counterfeit, manufacturing and trading in counterfeit goods. These are non-contentious in nature but shall be considered purely as breach of law in contrast to the protected healthy social order.
I personally think that intellectual property disputes should not be seen as a purely negative phenomenon, but the positive side of it is to help our judicial system to bring the law into the life, interpreting or explanation for specific cases to clarify what is the harmony, balancing point of the interests claimed by entities in order to achieve the highest legal principle of fairness and justice.
MC asked: Although there has been a law and a regulatory body for intellectual property (IP), in fact, IP exploitation in our country has not been effective, reflected in the low number of applications; effectiveness of exploiting protection titles, using trademarks are not high, few brands and brands have great value in the world. We also want to hear the analysis of lawyer Le Quang Vinh?
Attorney Vinh replied: The truth is that Vietnam is still a poor country, the level of science and technology is still very low compared to the world. The truth is that we have very little intellectual property assets. In order to change the national destiny and turn Vietnam into a developed country, I think Vietnam has no other way but to focus on innovation and creativity, turning a purely agricultural economy into an economy based on intellectual property and innovation. In the immediate future, we need to accelerate the formulation and promptly adopt of our national intellectual property strategy, raising our understanding and determination to reach consensus at the highest levels of state management on the need to attach importance to Intellectual property and innovation are the key goals of the country in the coming years, specifically, there are two most important goals that we should aim for:
1. To promote the research, application, use and maximum exploitation of the profitability of intellectual property rights in technology transfer, licensing, exploitation of huge data source available in technology-driven patents that have expired
2. To encouraging all economic sectors to participate in the creation of intellectual property assets by creating rational mechanisms and foundations to motivate them to invest and develop science and technology, support them to realize the introduction of such innovation and application into production and business, connecting effectively and continuously between scientific researches, universities and investors, enterprises including venture capital funds for the purpose of commercializing such innovative
MC asked: Dear Mr. Le Quang Vinh, in your opinion, what should we do to make the Law on Intellectual Property closer to businesses and people?
Vinh said: To my own understanding, in addition to improving the capacity of legal knowledge in general and intellectual property in particular of the public, business community, artists must at the same time ensure the following three pillars:
1. The quality of legislation must be good enough to be able to create a quality, sufficient and up-to-date legal system with the daily advancement of technology, so that the law can be understood and applied consistently for every subject
2. The judicial system in particular and the system of enforcement agencies of intellectual property rights in general must ensure the quality of the trial, must be capable of resolving objectively, fairly and on time.
The contingent of officials and public employees must be competent and knowledgeable in intellectual property so that they can confidently determine and issue a right decision applicable for a specific case
Link viewable the roundtable: http://hanoitv.vn/cong-nghe-va-doi-song-ha-noi-huong-ung-ngay-so-huu-tri-tue-the-gioi-2019-v113043.html
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