Fed up with continued piracy of DVDs and software, a Chinese city is offering retailers the chance to swap fake discs for real ones, a state newspaper said on Thursday.

For every three pirated discs handed in, a company based in the eastern city of Nanjing would hand over one real one, the China Daily said.

One former seller of pirated products had handed over more than 20,000 discs, the newspaper said.

"Feeling ashamed of my job, my daughter never talks to her friends about my profession," it quoted him as saying, when asked why he was participating.

The company operating the scheme, with support from the city government, was investing "several million yuan" in the campaign, the newspaper said.

Despite repeated government campaigns to stamp out copyright piracy, which has been a thorn in the side of Sino-U.S. and Sino-European relations, the problem remains widespread in China.

The latest Hollywood movies can normally be found on sale on street corners days after their official release, being sold for under $1 a piece.