Washington DC
18 December 2017
Reporter: Barney Dixon

USTR review of Thailand closed

US Trade Representative (USTR) Robert Lighthizer has closed the 301 Out-of-Cycle Review of Thailand, after the country took steps to strengthen its intellectual property framework.

Thailand was added to the priority watch list earlier this year in the USTR’s 2017 Special 301 Report and an investigation was launched in September.

Lighthizer said the US was willing to review Thailand’s position on the priority watch list, so long as it continued to take positive action on IP issues and made “substantial progress in addressing the concerns described in the Special 301 Report”.

This included issues related to counterfeit and pirated goods, as well as transparency issues.

Lighthizer explained that the Trump administration had been working closely with Thailand on improving IP protection and enforcement, and revealed that the two countries had resolved several IP concerns across a range of issues, including on enforcement, patents, pharmaceuticals, trademarks and copyright.

Thailand has also established an interagency National Committee on IP Policy and a subcommittee on enforcement against IP infringement.

In a statement on the closure of the review, Lighthizer commented: “A key objective of the Trump Administration’s trade policy is ensuring that US owners of IP have a full and fair opportunity to use and profit from their IP around the globe.”

“The key to promoting innovation is protecting intellectual property. We welcome the corrective actions that Thailand has taken and look forward to continuing to work with Thailand to resolve our remaining IP concerns.”

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