Governments United Against Counterfeiting

INTA supports newly announced Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement

NEW YORK, NY – October 23, 2007 – LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – The International Trademark Association (INTA) today announced full support for the new multilateral agreement on Anti-Counterfeiting that is being negotiated by the United States, European Institutions and European Union Member States, Switzerland, Mexico, New Zealand, Canada, Korea and Japan and may attract other countries committed to the protection of intellectual property.

The Anti-Counterfeiting Treaty Agreement (ACTA) encourages countries to adopt a common perspective in the fight against the global crimes of counterfeiting and piracy. To accomplish this goal, ACTA aims to increase international cooperation, identifying best practices with regard to enforcement of intellectual property rights, and pledges support for improving the international legal framework to combat counterfeiting.

INTA has been working closely with the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) and the European Commission to elevate the crime of counterfeiting and piracy, and to ratify tougher sanctions against those who commit these crimes. This agreement signals progress in addressing the growing international threat of counterfeiting as a crime utilizing multiple bases of operations and underscores the need for practical improvements which result in regionally-similar penalties and multi-jurisdictional deterrence.

“The implementation of Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) Agreement requirements in national laws has proven to be insufficient to combat trademark counterfeiting which often involves organized criminal groups,” said INTA Executive Director, Alan Drewsen.

INTA has been working globally on these issues for many years and in June 2007, the INTA Board of Directors approved a resolution stating INTA’s position on harmonization principles and the improvements required within the international legal framework for criminal sanctions against the offense of trademark counterfeiting.

“Trademark counterfeiting is increasing significantly despite the best efforts of rights holders and government authorities; therefore, there is an urgent need for initiatives placing greater emphasis on international cooperation and improvement in the legal framework to combat trademark counterfeiters who operate in more than one jurisdiction,” concluded Drewsen.

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