US report reveals growing Trade Secret Theft in China
The USTR US Trade Representative released on May 1, 2013 its annual special report. It reviews the intellectual property rights (IPR) protection policies and enforcement measures of 95 trading partners
The released report identifies a range of concerns, including the growing problem of misappropriation of trade secrets in China and elsewhere, indigenous innovation policies that may unfairly disadvantage U.S. rights holders in mainland China, further the continued deterioration of IPR protection, enforcement and market access for persons relying on IPR in Ukraine, and continuing challenges of copyright piracy over the internet in countries such as Brazil, Italy and Russia.
41 countries are listed on the Priority Watch List (PWL) or the Priority Foreign Country monitoring list. Countries listed on the PWL do not provide an adequate level of IPR protection or enforcement or of market access for persons relying on IPR protection. The PWL list entails apart from China, Algeria, Argentina, Chile, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Russia, Thailand and Venezuela, whereas Canada was removed from the list in recognition of significant progress on copyright issues. On the lower PWL level meriting bi-lateral attention in view to IPR problems figure Barbados, Belarus, Bolivia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Finland, Greece, Guatemala, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Kuwait, Lebanon, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Romania, Tajikistan, Trinidad & Tobago, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Vietnam. Added newly to the list were Barbados, Bulgaria, Paraguay and Trinidad & Tobago due to various specific problems. Removed from the list are Brunei Darussalam and Norway. Not on the list are El Salvador and Spain, but the USTR will conduct out-of-cycle reviews to assess progress on IPR challenges.
Of course, China is prominently present throughout the report, but USTR recognises also that some Chinese Supreme People’s Court ruled also in favour of the liability of Internet intermediaries.