China closes 3,000 shops

Updated: 2006-08-17 14:16
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China has closed 3,014 shops around the country selling pirated audio-video products and computer software in one month, at the beginning of a 100-day intensive crackdown on piracy.

About 8.371 million illegal publications, mainly pirated CDs, DVDs, and computer software, were confiscated, according to the State Press and Publication Administration (SPPA), which overseas the country's anti-piracy efforts.

Police and copyright officials have raided more than 89,000 shops and street vendors nationwide and 9,508 of them were punished for selling pirated products.

"We are giving shopkeepers a stern lesson to make it clear that selling pirated products will lead to strict penalties," said Liu Binjie, vice director of SPPA.

According to SPPA officials, more than 60 percent of shops nationwide registered in the audio-video trade had handed in pirated discs they were storing.

In Chongqing city , Hubei province and Jiangsu province alone, about 150,000 pirated products were collected.

"We will not punish shops that have voluntarily handed in pirated products in the first month," said Liu, "but will strike hard on those who ignore our warning and continue to sell such products."

"We will close every shop we find are guilty of violations in the next two months," he added.