Singapore has introduced licensing regulations for local CD-ROM manufacturers in an effort to stamp out growing CD-ROM piracy in the country.
The move comes soon after antipiracy body the Business Software Alliance (BSA) criticised Singapore for not doing enough to combat CD-ROM piracy.
According to the new government regulations, manufacturers of CD-ROMs and video CDs must now apply for a license to import equipment needed to manufacture master disks and to turn out copies. Approval will only be given to manufacturers who agree with the conditions laid down for obtaining a license, which include an undertaking not to infringe intellectual property rights.
The Singapore Government has also demonstrated its concern about being singled out for having a lax antipiracy attitude by introducing heavy penalties for infringements of the new regulations.
People who break the regulations face up to two years in jail and maximum fines of $US61,000, or three times the value of the goods pirated, whichever figure is greater.
Nine local optical disk manufacturers, including Creative Technology, have signed a code of conduct under which they have committed to protecting copyright.