Post Tagged with: "IP"

Justin Trudeau: "Trade needs to work for people" by European Parliament (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/RZn1gM

PBO Concludes CETA Patent Rules Will Lead To Outflow of Hundreds of Millions in Pharma Royalties

The Parliamentary Budget Officer released a report last week providing its estimate on the economic impact of the Canada – EU Trade Agreement. While the Liberal government made CETA its top trade priority when it came into office (and the Conservatives claimed that the deal would add $12 billion to the Canadian economy), the PBO report concludes that the economic benefits will be modest at best.

The report devotes a full chapter to CETA’s intellectual property provisions, particularly the patent related rules that will have a direct impact on the pharmaceutical industry.  CETA establishes patent restoration and patent appeal rules that will extend the term of patent protection for pharmaceutical products, thereby increasing consumer prices and royalty outflows. With a regulatory framework designed to address pricing in place, the report focuses on increased royalty outflows with extended protection.

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May 8, 2017 5 comments News
USTR notice http://www.bilaterals.org/?draft-nafta-notice

Deciphering the U.S. NAFTA Digital Demands, Part One: Intellectual Property

The leak of the draft notice from the Trump Administration on the NAFTA renegotiation, which identifies at least 40 issues, will serve as the starting point for discussions once talks begin. Coverage of the U.S. interests has emphasized tariff issues, rules of origin, and tax treatment, but the digital issues should not be overlooked. The U.S. starting position looks a lot like the TPP, which suggests that we already have a very clear understanding of the text that U.S. negotiators will propose. This post unpacks some of the general language to decipher what the U.S. has in mind on intellectual property issues. A second post will review the other digital issues, including privacy and e-commerce rules.

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March 31, 2017 3 comments News
U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman Video Press Conference with Geneva Media by United States Mission Geneva (CC BY-ND 2.0)

Canadian Government on U.S. Special 301: We Don’t Recognize Validity of Flawed Report

The U.S. Trade Representative is conducting a hearing today on the Special 301 report, its annual list of countries it claims have inadequate intellectual property protections. Several countries will appear alongside many lobby groups. I’ve previously posted on how the report from the IIPA, which represents the movie, music, software and publishing industries, badly misstates Canadian law.  Indeed, with recent court decisions, Canada now has one of the toughest anti-piracy rules in the world.

I recently obtained documents under the Access to Information Act that confirm the Canadian government’s rejection of the Special 301 process.  Canada will not bother appearing today largely because it rejects the entire process. According to a memorandum drafted for Canadian Heritage Minister Melanie Joly after last years’ report:

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March 8, 2017 8 comments News
Donald J. Trump at Marriott Marquis NYC September 7th 2016 by Michael Vadon (CC BY 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/Mj9V9J

Back to the Drawing Board as Trump Kills the TPP

President-Elect Donald Trump has ended any further speculation about the future of the Trans Pacific Partnership by announcing that he plans to formally withdraw from the agreement on his first day in office. I’ve written extensively about why ratification for Canada would be a mistake and argued last week in the Globe that Canada should use the death of the TPP as an opportunity to re-examine its approach to trade agreement negotiations including working toward greater transparency, focusing on tariff reduction rather than regulations, and dropping controversial ISDS provisions.

The need for Canada to wait on the U.S. has been readily apparent for months. As currently structured, the TPP cannot take effect without the U.S. since entering into force requires ratification by at least six signatories who represent at least 85 percent of the GDP of the countries in the original deal. That provision effectively gives both the U.S. and Japan veto power. With the U.S. pulling out, the agreement will not enter into force no matter what Canada (or anyone else) does.

The central role of the U.S. in the TPP is no accident. For most TPP countries, access to the U.S. market was the primary reason for entering into the agreement and as Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said over the weekend, “the TPP would be meaningless without the United States.” Indeed, the reason Canada, Japan, and Mexico all joined the TPP talks late was that without a clear commitment from the U.S., the agreement was of limited value.

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November 22, 2016 3 comments News
Donald Trump by Matt Johnson (CC BY-NC 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/CDVn7Z

Trump Victory May Kill the TPP, But Reopening NAFTA Could Bring Back the Same IP Demands

Donald Trump’s stunning win of the U.S. Presidency on Tuesday night has sparked numerous articles speculating about the implications for various policies and issues. Given how little Trump said about digital policy, predictions about telecom or IP policy are little more than educated guesses. Trade policy was a major Trump issue, however, as his opposition to the Trans Pacific Partnership and vow to renegotiate NAFTA was repeated at virtually every campaign stop.  Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell confirmed yesterday that the TPP would not be brought up for a vote this year, leaving Trump to decide on its future. Officials in other TPP countries such as Australia, New Zealand, and Malaysia have now acknowledged that the TPP is likely dead.

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November 10, 2016 6 comments News