Six major music providers have agreed to a plan to charge users a fee to download copyrighted music, it was announced at a recent seminar on digital music held in HCM City.

Effective on November 1, users may listen to music online for free but must pay 1,000 VND (0.05 US cent) for each song they download.

About a quarter of the nation's population uses internet. Over three quarters of those use online music services, but 85 percent of them don't pay for the copyrighted content, said Phung Tien Cong, deputy director of MV Corp, a multi-sectoral technology group. Collecting royalties for downloaded songs would fight copyright infringement and help the online music market develop, he said.

The seminar was organised by MV Corp, the Vietnam Centre for Protection of Music Copyright and the Recording Industry Association of Vietnam.-VNA