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Position paper - Consultation on the protection and enforcement of IP rights in third countries

26 Nov 2020
Intellectual Property

The American Chamber of Commerce to the European Union (AmCham EU) welcomes the European Commission’s ongoing efforts to advance strong and balanced intellectual property rights (IPR) globally. Together with the EU Counterfeit and Piracy Watch List, the biannual report on the protection and enforcement of IPR in third countries is an important tool in assessing the scale and scope of the challenges being faced, and in determining where to focus the EU’s efforts. US businesses invested in and committed to Europe often rely on the appropriate legal frameworks in third countries regarding IPR. These US companies invest and innovate in a range of critical sectors, including life sciences, digital, audiovisual and consumer goods. Such innovations bring benefits to citizens, patients and consumers, as well as the broader economy – not just in Europe or the US, but across the globe.

We call upon the European Commission to strengthen its focus on securing sustainable improvements to the IP environment in third counties. The Commission’s work with third countries should include a focus on strengthening rules and technical capabilities of authorities, clear and measurable objectives in improving prosecution of bad actors, reduction of exported infringements and ease of resolving civil disputes between competitors. The mechanisms to support this may include further dialogue and engagement of third country governments and other stakeholders, technical programmes (eg, IP Key), negotiating ambitious IP provisions in EU Free Trade Agreements (FTAs), and critically the Commission’s new trade enforcement strategy, which strengthens the implementation and enforcement of EU trade policy, including for IP. In addition, we also encourage reinforcing existing collaborations, including with the US. AmCham EU stands ready to work with the European Commission in achieving those goals and in sharing insight on other countries and the IPR challenges faced by our companies globally.