US-EU transatlantic trade deal would skip IPRs

Intellectual Property Watch | 21 June 2012

US-EU transatlantic trade deal would skip IPRs

The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) yesterday released an interim report with the European Union on ways to expand transatlantic trade and investment. But apparently this would not include trying to bridge differences on intellectual property rights.

The Interim Report to Leaders from the Co-Chairs of the EU-U.S. High Level Working Group on Jobs and Growth states:

“Both the EU and the United States are committed to a high level of intellectual property protection, including enforcement, and cooperate extensively through the Transatlantic IPR Working Group. Both sides agree that it would not be feasible in negotiations to seek to reconcile across the board differences in the IPR obligations that each typically includes in its comprehensive trade agreements. Before the launch of any negotiations, both sides would further consult on possible approaches to deal with IPR matters in a mutually satisfactory manner.”

The report sees most promise in tariff and non-tariff barriers, regulation and standards, and enhanced cooperation.

Ironically, USTR and the EU have pushed hard for the inclusion of intellectual property rights in every recent trade agreement they have pursued up till now.

The National Association of Manufacturers published a blog item today saying the bilateral agreement would create jobs.

source: IP Watch