USTR Sets Deadline For Comments On Review Of Indian Protection Of US IP 16/10/2014 by William New, Intellectual Property Watch 1 Comment Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Comments must be submitted in the new two to three weeks for an extraordinary review by the United States government of India’s protection of US intellectual property rights. The Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) this week announced the deadlines for written public comments to be submitted by 31 October (7 November for foreign governments). The announcement of the dates of the so-called “out-of-cycle” review of India was made in the 14 October Federal Register. The review was announced last spring in the 2014 Special 301 report, in which USTR unilaterally assesses whether trading partners are adequately protecting US IP rights. In the report, USTR “announced that, in order to assess progress on engagement with the Government of India on intellectual property rights (IPR) issues, an Out-of-Cycle Review (OCR) would be conducted for India,” the Federal Register notice states. “USTR requests written submissions from the public concerning information, views, acts, policies, or practices relevant to evaluating the Government of India’s engagement on IPR issues of concern, in particular those identified in the 2014 Special 301 Report.” “In the 2014 Special 301 Report published in April, USTR called for renewed and intensive engagement on intellectual property (IP) issues with the Government of India, announcing that the United States would “redouble our efforts to seek constructive engagement that will both improve IP protection and enforcement in India and support India’s efforts to achieve a ‘decade of innovation’ and advance its legitimate public policy goals, including access to affordable medicines,” USTR said in a release. In the Special 301 report, India was placed on the “priority watch list,” one level (out of three levels) below the most egregious violators. A USTR release on the public comment deadlines is available here. The announcement comes at high-profile time, just two weeks after the leaders of the US and India met in Washington, DC promising to work constructively and announcing a high-level IP working group (IPW, Bilateral/Regional Negotiations, 1 October 2014). Indian officials have argued that the country’s IP policies are in line with international rules and have challenged the US to bring a dispute settlement case at the World Trade Organization if it asserts there is non-compliance. Key issues have been court decisions and concern that India might utilise WTO-sanctioned flexibilities by not applying patents on some medicines. In some ways, the USTR Special 301 report is simply a US wish list of issues to discuss bilaterally with trading partners. It rarely results in sanctions. Image Credits: Embassy of India Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Related William New may be reached at email@example.com."USTR Sets Deadline For Comments On Review Of Indian Protection Of US IP" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.