Hopes for bet­ter rating in US re­view

Bangkok Post - - BUSINESS - PHUSADEE ARUNMAS

The gov­ern­ment ex­pects a bet­ter rating from the US Trade Rep­re­sen­ta­tive (USTR) on the lat­est eval­u­a­tion of Thai­land’s crack­down ef­forts on in­tel­lec­tual prop­erty (IP) vi­o­la­tions, which may per­suade the US to re­move it from the Pri­or­ity Watch List.

Be­ing delisted could help Thai­land es­cape be­ing slapped with non-tar­iff bar­ri­ers on trade by the US.

Thos­apone Dan­supu­tra, direc­tor-gen­eral of the Com­merce Min­istry’s In­tel­lec­tual Prop­erty Depart­ment, said it has gone to great lengths to show it is se­ri­ous about stop­ping IP in­fringe­ments and it will present this in­for­ma­tion to the USTR dur­ing its out-of-cy­cle re­view in Oc­to­ber.

He said the depart­ment is amend­ing its IP reg­u­la­tions re­lated to the on­line mar­ket and e-com­merce to mod­ernise them be­cause vi­o­la­tors now dis­trib­ute IP on­line in­stead of mak­ing un­law­ful hard copies.

The amend­ments will in­clude a method for own­ers of IP, goods or ad­ver­tise­ments to force in­ter­net ser­vice providers (ISPs) to take down all posts that in­fringe on their rights.

“The amend­ment of reg­u­la­tions is due to be com­pleted by the end of this year, which is fur­ther proof we are pro­gress­ing in our crack­downs on IP in­fringe­ment,” said Mr Thos­apone.

The USTR’s 2017 Re­view of No­to­ri­ous Mar­kets listed sev­eral mar­kets as red zones, mean­ing they have many un­law­ful copies of movies, songs and other IP items.

Mr Thos­apone ex­pects sev­eral mar­kets to be delisted from the US re­view in Oc­to­ber.

Sev­eral US film mak­ers and other US firms have re­ported find­ing many un­law­ful copies of films on web­sites, a change from the hard copies pre­vi­ously avail­able at no­to­ri­ous mar­kets.

“That’s why we need to amend the law,” he said.

Pre­vi­ously IP own­ers had to wait un­til the ac­cused were found guilty of vi­o­lat­ing the Com­puter Crime Act of 2007, which could take sev­eral months, be­fore us­ing court or­ders to force ISPs to take down con­tent.

APICHART JINAKUL

An of­fi­cial, in this filed photo, cuts a hand­bag with fake brand name dur­ing an event to de­stroy coun­ter­feit and pi­rate goods held by the In­tel­lec­tual Prop­erty Depart­ment and po­lice.

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