The scope of works protected in Cambodia under copyright is set to greatly expand with the country’s accession to the Berne Convention. On June 27, 2020, the King of Cambodia signed the Law on the Adoption of the Kingdom of Cambodia to be a Party to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works of 1886, and its Amendment of 1979.
At present, under the Law on Copyright and Related Rights, foreign works are, for the most part, not protected. In order to be granted protection, works first published abroad must then be brought to be published in Cambodia within 30 days of their first public communication (Article 3(1)). Under the Berne Convention, works from another contracting state must be given the same protection in Cambodia as domestic works, and without the need for any formalities.
Although Cambodia is a member of the World Trade Organization’s Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, which requires members to comply with the Berne Convention, Cambodia was granted a limited exemption as a least-developed country from compliance with TRIPs obligations until July 1, 2021.
An implementing regulation is expected to be enacted within the coming months.
For more on copyright in Cambodia, please refer to our Guide to Copyright Law in Cambodia