Foreign media reports that a few music companies including Universal Music Group (UMG) and EMI may bring a lawsuit against Yahoo (YHOO) China in the coming weeks.

John Kennedy, Chairman and CEO of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), says they still hope to solve the problem through negotiation.

Statistics from IFPI shows 90% of albums in China are plagiarized and Yahoo China provides a great deal of illegal music links. Last year, China's local search engine Baidu.com was sued for the same reason.

IFPI says that it will consider raising another lawsuit against these search engines in accordance with a Chinese law that went effect on July 1, forbidding websites to provide music or movie links illegally on their sites.

IFPI says Yahoo China is an mp3 link site which is infringing IFPI member companies' rights on a large scale by making available copyrighted songs for download from its service without any permission from the record companies.

In April 2006 IFPI wrote to Yahoo China on behalf of its member record companies, asking it to take the necessary steps to stop the infringement of IFPI members' rights. To date IFPI says it has received no acceptable response. IFPI is taking the preliminary steps required by Chinese law for filing a lawsuit.

IFPI Chairman and CEO John Kennedy said, "Yahoo China has been blatantly infringing our members' rights. We have started the process and as far as we're concerned we're on the track to litigation. If negotiation can prevent that, so be it."

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