China Seizes Millions Of Illegal CDs, DVDs

China has confiscated more than eight million illegal CDs and DVDs as part of a 100-day crackdown on pirated movies and computer software, state press reported Aug. 17. The campaign has had "remarkable success" and coincides with a rise in sales of authorized CDs and DVDs in major cities, the China Daily quoted the head of the National Copyright Association, Long Xinmin, as saying.

More than 89,000 shops and street vendors have been raided as part of the crackdown, which began on July 25, with 8.3 million CDs and DVDs seized, Xinhua news agency said. Just over 3,000 shops have been closed down for selling pirated goods while 9,508 businesses have been punished.

"We will close every shop which we find is guilty of violations in the next two months," said the vice director of the state press and publication administration, Liu Binjie.

The China Daily said the 100-day campaign was unprecedented in terms of its duration and number of government departments involved. However Chinese authorities regularly announce crackdowns, laws and other actions to rein in the nation's counterfeit industry with seemingly little impact, as pirated goods remain widely available.

The U.S. has been a particularly sharp critic of China on piracy, charging Beijing is not doing enough to combat the problem. The U.S. government says pirated Chinese products are costing U.S. companies tens of billions of dollars a year.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2006

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