Faced with mounting criticism over ACTA secrecy, officials from both the U.S. and the EU are speaking out. In a letter to the editor at the Financial Times, the USTR's Stanford McCoy rejects the transparency concerns, claiming:
"Far from keeping them secret, governments participating in these negotiations have sought public comments, released a summary of issues under discussion, and enhanced public engagement."
Meanwhile, an EU official told EurActiv.com that media reports have oversimplified ACTA and that information has been provided to the European Parliament "whenever possible." The EU official declined to be named due to a non-disclosure agreement.
On the other hand, UK Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills David Lammy provided the House of Commons with his government's official position on ACTA secrecy:
It is current UK policy on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement to seek the agreement of our negotiating partners to publish the draft text. However, it is the practice in trade negotiations that working documents are not disclosed without the consent of all the negotiating parties. Not all parties currently agree to the release of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) draft text. My officials continue to press for greater transparency with our negotiating partners.
Not to be forgotten, Bridges Weekly reports on mounting concerns in the developing world over ACTA. While an official from the Chamber of Commerce argues that it is not desirable to address ACTA issues at WIPO, a developing country trade diplomat acknowledges that the developing world will face pressure to adopt ACTA-like provisions and that the process sounds like "TRIPs-plus-plus-plus."