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Asia pay TV losing $1 billion yearly to pirates

The pay television industry in Asia is expected to see revenue losses due to piracy rise by 11 percent this year to $1.06 billion, with India accounting for more than half the losses, according to a study released last week by an industry group.

Governments in the region are expected to lose $155 million this year in taxes, license fees and other revenues as a result of pirated cable and satellite television, said the study, which was co-authored by investment bank CLSA.

Total losses in India are expected to rise by 19 percent to $670 million this year, due largely to theft of programming on a wholesale basis, the study found.

Piracy losses from China were not included in the report, because it is seen as having a negligible genuine pay-TV market by some industry standards, the report said.

The study covered all forms of pay TV in Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. Both Singapore and Malaysia saw declining piracy percentages from 2004, the report found.

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