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Vietnam: Law Amending and Supplementing a Number of Articles of The IP Law Passed by The National Assembly

23

JUN

2022

On June 16, 2022, the Law amending and supplementing a number of articles of the Law on Intellectual Property (“the amended IP Law 2022”, or shortly “the amended IP Law”) was approved by the National Assembly. Thus, the IP Law has been amended and supplemented three times, in 2009, 2019 and 2022.

The amended IP Law will take effect from January 1, 2023, except for the provisions on protection of sound-marks which take effect from January 14, 2022 and regulations on protection of experimental data for agricultural chemical products take effect from January 14, 2024.

More than 100 of the 222 articles of the current IP Law have been amended and supplemented, grouped into the following 07 Policy Groups:

Policy Group 1: Stipulating more clearly the regulations on authors, copyright holders, performers, related rights holders in cases of assignment and transfer of copyright and related rights.

Most notably, the amended IP Law allows the transfer of certain moral rights by agreement (namely the right to name and modify works) in accordance with the specifics of the field of copyright in order to address the need for changing, renaming works and modifying, upgrading computer programs, etc.

Policy Group 2: Encouraging the creation, exploitation and dissemination of inventions, industrial designs, layout designs and plant varieties resulted from scientific and technological (S&T) research tasks using the State budget.

Accordingly, the amended IP Law gives the right to register inventions, industrial designs, layout designs and plant varieties resulted from the S&T tasks using the state budget to the host organization automatically without reimbursement, and at the same time, there is a mechanism for reasonable distribution of benefits between the State, the host organization and the author.

Policy Group 3: Facilitating the registration of copyright, related rights, industrial property rights:

Accordingly, whether rights are automatically established without registration (in case of copyright, related rights) or must be registered (in case of industrial property rights), the regulations on procedures, time limits, composition/requirements of an application etc. will be simplified, handled transparently within the prescribed time limit.

Specifically, it allows to register copyright and related rights on-line; simplify industrial design descriptions; limit the scope of security control on inventions; permit delay publication of industrial design applications; supplement regulations on the re-examination order in the complaint settlement process.

Policy Group 4: Ensuring an adequate level of protection and harmonizing interests between the rights holders and society

The amended IP Law supplements some exceptions which are considered non-infringement of copyright (for example, if the person concerned is disabled), clearly defines the scope and limitations of the copyright and related rights in order to ensure harmonization of interests between the copyright holders, the organizations and individuals exploiting and using works and the public enjoying the works; ensures the implementation of international commitments in accordance with the practical conditions of Vietnam.

The amended IP Law also supplements a number of regulations to control inventions using genetic resources and traditional knowledge about genetic resources; supplements grounds for cancellation or invalidation of protection titles; handling of conflicts between trademarks and plant variety names, and objects of copyright and related rights; amending regulations on subjects for geographical indications; clarifying the conditions considered as unfair competition between domain names and pre-existing trademarks, trade names or geographical indications.

Policy Group 5: Strengthening the effectiveness of IP representation activities

A number of regulations are supplemented in a more open direction to create a healthy competition in the provision of representation services; division of the type of representative and the corresponding scope of practice (for example, in the field of patents or trademarks...); lessening conditions/qualifications eligible for obtaining a Representative Certificate.

Policy Group 6: Improving the efficiency of IPR enforcement

The amended IP Law supplements the right to proactively apply control measures at the border to Customs if during the process of inspection/supervision a clear evidence has been found to suspect that imported and exported goods are IP counterfeit goods.

Policy Group 7: Ensuring the full implementation of Vietnam's international commitments to IP protection. Specifically,

Amending and supplementing a number of contents related to technological measures to protect rights and rights-management information to ensure the implementation in digital environment; a number of exceptional provisions related to copyright and related rights.

Amending and supplementing a number of contents related to sound trademark protection; cancellation of validity of the protection title for the mark; mechanisms to ensure information for patent holders to exercise their rights in the marketing authorization procedures for pharmaceutical products; obligation to protect confidential data in agrochemical license applications; mechanisms to compensate patent owners for delays in marketing authorization of pharmaceutical products; assumptions about copyright and related rights; rights and responsibilities of intermediary service providers in the Internet and telecommunications network environment; obligation to proactively suspend customs procedures for imported or exported goods suspected of being counterfeit IP goods.

Going forward, the ministries most involved, namely the Ministry of Science and Technology - responsible for the state management of industrial property, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism - responsible for the state management of copyright and related rights and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development - responsible for the state management of plant varieties, must also prepare and submit to the Government for approval and promulgation of sub-law documents to implement the amended IP Law. This is not a small amount of work while the law comes into effect on January 1, 2023.

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Tel 84-24-3824 4852
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