The ministries of commerce and information on Tuesday issued an inter-ministerial prakas on the management of trade registration, brand protection and trademark for the information and audiovisual sectors.
The ministries are giving those who do business in the sectors six months to register at the commerce ministry.
Co-signed by commerce minister Pan Sorasak and information minister Khieu Kanharith on August 28, the prakas said the aim is to manage trade registrations for the sectors.
It ensures that the identities of each unit do not overlap other units and prevent unfair competition.
Consisting of six chapters and 14 articles, the prakas added that all natural and legal persons will not be allowed to use brands and trademarks affecting public order, social morality, or good traditions of the nation.
“All natural and legal persons who do business or service in the information and audiovisual sector have to request trade registration. [These persons] can also request brand and trademark registration at the commerce ministry within six months of the signing. If necessary, the commerce ministry can decide to delay another six months,” the prakas said.
Information ministry spokesman Meas Sophorn told The Post on Tuesday that the ministries’ decision is not meant to put pressure or burden on such institutions. Rather, it encourages them to participate further in protecting their legal rights.
“The aim of this joint prakas is to encourage an institution to register at the information ministry. The institution has to receive legal protection of using trademark and brand registry in its information sector to avoid disputes of using names or trademarks of each unit,” he said.
Sophorn said that as of the first semester of this year, the information ministry had registered 452 newspaper units, 196 magazine units, 22 bulletin units, 621 page and TV online units, 221 radio station units and 239 TV station units.
Leang Delux, executive director of Thmey Thmey Online News, supported the move. Besides receiving legal protection, the measure helps protect the interests of companies and the public, he said.
“As long as there is piracy or trademark fraud, it affects seriously. We work professionally, but if other news outlets that have a similar brand do not register and do work professionally, it affects our image too. It also affected public interests when incorrect information is disseminated,” he said.
Delux said obedience of the law not only helps his institution protect against piracy, but it also helps maintain confidence in his partners. All information institutions should be registered and obey the law duly, he added.