Mumbai, Feb 17 (ANI): Stronger enforcement of copyright laws are a must if Bollywood wants to reduce millions of dollars in losses incurred every year because of piracy, says a top industry official.
"We would like a legislation to be put in place to deal with piracy. We would like the experienced and judicious process so that there is a real deterrent. We will work and meet with the government and try to advocate our case as well as the local industry. They have the exact same problem as we do," said Michael C Ellis, president and managing director of Asia Pacific Association of producers.
"In some respect, their problems are worse because we have a very big global market whereas the Indian film, the global market is lot smaller," added Michael.
Hawkers selling cheap pirated CDs and DVDs on busy Indian streets find easy patrons among many cost-conscious consumers who pay less than one dollar for a disc instead of going to a multiplex with tickets priced at about three dollars
Industry estimates say this means more than 400 million dollars in revenue loss for India's entertainment industry.
Bollywood, the world's largest film industry by ticket sales, is worth about 85 billion rupees and is forecast to more than double to 175 billion rupees by 2011.
Bollywood film director and producer Mukhesh Bhatt said entertainment tax must be cut to reduce piracy.
"Entertainment tax should be reduced so that there will be a fall in the rate of the ticket. And the poor people who are not in a condition to afford will be able to purchase the ticket. Then piracy will be able to control of its own," said Bhatt.
Bollywood films' growing popularity abroad has fed a thriving bootleg industry in countries such as Britain, the United States and Pakistan.
To limit the drain on profits, some Indian studios have gone after the pirates, identifying with the help of police shops stocking bootleg CDs and DVDs and seizing disc writing equipment.
But these steps have achieved little, and experts say that that is mainly due to weak law enforcement and a lack of awareness.
Breach of copyright laws is punishable by prison for up to three years, but most pirates get away paying a nominal fine. (ANI)