US puts India on priority watch list

Washington, Apr 26 | Updated: Apr 27 2008, 07:11am hrs
The US has placed India, and eight other countries, on its priority watch list for this year for failing to protect the copyrights, patents, and trademarks of American producers from piracy.

The US continues to urge India to improve its IPR regime by providing stronger protection for patents, copyrights and trademarks, as well as protection against unfair commercial use of undisclosed test and other data generated to obtain marketing approval for pharmaceutical products, the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) said in its Special 301 report.

The Special 301 report is prepared by the USTR on adequacy and effectiveness of Intellectual Property Rights by trading partners of the US.

Apart from India, China and Russia, Argentina, Chile, Israel, Pakistan, Thailand and Venezuela have been placed in the list.

Putting the countries in this list means that the US will subject them to extra scrutiny and if it decides to pursue complaints before the World Trade Organisations then economic sanctions could be imposed on these countries.

The US encourages India to implement the WIPO Internet Treaties by streng-thening its copyright laws, and to improve its IPR enforcement system by enacting and implementing an effective optical disc licensing scheme to combat optical disc piracy, the report said.