Japan and China sign copyright deal

Countries to hash out ways to protect intellectual property

Japan and China have inked a memorandum — similar to a treaty — on copyright protection.

The agreement, concluded on Monday between China’s State Copyright Bureau and Japan’s Cultural Affairs Bureau, calls for meetings and symposiums to hash out copyright issues, training and exchange of government employees and development of a system for copyright protection.

The memorandum is expected to smooth the export of Japanese intellectual products, including entertainment, to China, where they have long been subject to rampant piracy.

According to the latest Chinese government figures, 73 million pirated items — including 48 million DVDs and CDs — were seized in 2006, of which 18 million were Japanese.

The agreement will be automatically renewed every five years unless one or both of the parties decide to cancel.

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