On June 16, Vietnam's National Assembly approved the Amended Intellectual Property Law (“New IP Law").

It can be considered the most significant set of amendments since its promulgation in 2005 and it includes over 100 updates of the articles. The new IP Law will take effect on 1 January 2023 (and on 14 January 2024 for just some of the provisions).

The amendments made by the National Assembly cover copyright, trademark and patent-related rights.

Among the updates for copyright, the most significant are those related to:

- Provisions relating to copyright and related rights provide for, among others, the following:

  • more specific requirements to determine right in order to facilitate the variation of copyright ownership;
  • the transfer of some moral rights by agreement;
  • updates to several exceptions and limitations to copyright and related rights to balance the rights of copyright holders with the interest of organizations and individuals in exploiting and using copyrighted works as well as the public use;
  • presumption of copyright/related right ownership in civil, administrative and criminal proceedings for individuals and organizations named after a copyrighted work;
  • intermediary service providers' liability for copyright and related rights' online infringements;
  • additional obligations for collective management organizations.

- Administrative procedures for copyright recordation and industrial property rights establishment have been simplified and improved.

When it comes to trademarks, the Amended IP Law introduces the following:

  • sound marks are protected as a result of Vietnam's accession to CPTPP; and
  • bad faith recognized as grounds to oppose and cancel trademarks.

Considering the patent, the new IP Law allows for delay of publication of industrial design applications and limits security controls on patents. In addition to the above listed modification, there is something new for IP enforcement  provisions too:

  • administrative sanctions as one of the measures to handle IP infringements, contrary to a publicly disclosed previous draft, which had been met with comments from stakeholders on the need for administrative sanctions from practical perspective; and
  • customs to proactively apply measures control at the border in case of solid grounds to suspect that imported/exported goods are counterfeited.

Waiting for the effective date, the Ministry of Science and Technology, will draft and submit to competent authorities guiding documents to implement the Amended IP Law.

As the date of today, however, it's clear that the new IP Law will impact the company business since it constitutes a step forward in order to overcome practical obstacles and inadequacies with the aim of improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the state management of IP, promoting the developments of the economy, culture and society of the country.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.