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Archived updates for Thursday, September 20, 2007

EU Bilateral Trade Deals Aimed at Global IP Protection

According to David Cronin, writing for Intellectual Property Watch on September 20, 2007, the European Commission's proposed Economic Partnership Agreements with 76 African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) will commit all parties to a robust enforcement of IP rights by December 31, 2007:

The Commission’s thinking behind its efforts to have IP provisions in trade deals it reaches with countries outside the EU was outlined in a ‘market access strategy’ published in April. It identified “poor protection” of IP rights as one of the principal barriers to trade encountered by European firms trying to do business abroad.

Paul Goodison from the European Research Office, which monitors trade between the EU and developing countries, . . . believes that the Commission is likely to seek similar provisions in further deals with potentially more lucrative markets, such as India or Brazil. “The ACP countries are the weak underbelly,” he said. “If they sign up to these provisions, then the Commission will be able to say ‘if LDCs [least developed countries] have agreed to these, why should Brazil be worried?’ The Commission has extremely skilled negotiators and they understand this fully.”

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