Strict anti-piracy laws to attract investment in IT sector
KARACHI, April 14 2005 : The proper protection of intellectual property rights could attract more local and foreign investment in the country’s nascent software sector, said Co-Chairman Business Software Alliance (BSA), a group of world’s leading software companies here on April 13. Al Redha, based in Dubai and currently visiting Pakistan, said that the software piracy had been discouraging both the national and international software companies to invest in Pakistan.
Violation of copyright laws had become a considerable problem and needed to be checked with all means to develop the IT industry, he observed.
Over the last few years, most of the investment in the software sector had been diverted to those countries where the anti-piracy laws were strongly implemented, observed the Co-Chairman BSA.
BSA groups the world’s leading IT companies, which have joined hands to check piracy all over the globe. These include Adobe, Apple Computer, AutoDesk, Compaq, Corel Corporation, IBM, Intel, Lotus Development, Macromedia, Microsoft, Network Associates, Novell, Sybase and Symantec.
“The worldwide software piracy figures depict that 83 percent business software used in Pakistan is illegal. This unauthorised usage is costing the country millions of rupees each year in the shape of lost taxes and depriving people of employment opportunities in the huge software industry,” he added.
Al Redha said that the software was made available through the hectic efforts of a number of people including programmers, designers, artists, producers, distributors and retailers, who had to suffer at the hands of pirates. Software piracy was not only harmful to the software producers but also equally detrimental to its users, he said.
Al Redha said the legal software provided all the documentation including disks and tutorials and qualified the user for free or low-price upgrades through registration. On the contrary, Al Redha said, pirated software did not ensure quality performance. The illegal software may also introduce viruses, which were a major threat to the priceless data stored on the hard disks, he added.
Al Redha urged all the end-users, resellers and hard disk loaders not to use pirated software as it was harmful to software producers and the national economy.
In its efforts to develop IT industry in Pakistan, he said, some of BSA’s members were helping the students and educational institutions in installing reliable software by giving them up to 90 percent discounts on the original prices.
He said BSA was promoting the growth of the software industry through its international public policy, education, and enforcement programmes.
Source: Business Recorder