Singapore, May 16 (CNA) The software piracy rate in Taiwan dropped to 37 percent in 2011 from 40 percent five years ago, as Taiwanese are beginning to recognize the importance of the technology industry, according to an annual global software piracy survey released Tuesday.
Last year, Taiwan's software piracy rate was lower than the global average of 42 percent, the study by the Business Software Alliance (BSA) and International Data Corp. (IDC) showed.
Taiwan's software piracy rate was also the second lowest among the four Asian tigers, which include Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea, according to the BSA/IDC report.
The piracy rate in Singapore was 33 percent, in South Korea 40 percent and in Hong Kong 43 percent, the report showed.
Victor Lim, vice president of IDC Asia/Pacific consulting operations, told CNA that the falling software piracy rate in Taiwan was the result of several factors, including public recognition of the value of technology.
The Taiwan government's efforts to encourage innovation and promote legal software also contributed to the lower piracy rate, he said.
The 2011 BSA/IDC study found that piracy rates in emerging markets was way above those in developed markets. The piracy rate in Asia was 60 percent, while in the BRICs grouping -- Brazil, Russia, India and China -- the average rate was 70 percent, the report said.
Meanwhile, the commercial value of pirated software worldwide climbed from US$58.8 billion in 2010 to US$63.4 billion in 2011, the survey found.
This was "a new record propelled by PC shipments to emerging economies where piracy rates are highest," the BSA said in a statement.
According to the report, Taiwan's legal software producers suffered losses of US$293 million in 2011 as a result of piracy, up from US$215 million in 2007.
BSA, a global advocate for the software industry, has been conducting the annual survey in collaboration with the independent market research firm IDC since 2003.
The latest survey included nearly 15,000 computer users in 33 countries that together accounted for 82 percent of the global PC market, according to the BSA.
(By Tang Pei-chun and Elizabeth Hsu)