US 'Blacklists' Bulgaria over Internet Piracy

Business | May 4, 2013, Saturday // 14:15|  views

Bulgaria is now on the US "Watch List" as its intellectual property regime is deemed of concern. File photo

The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) has added Bulgaria to the list of States violating intellectual property rights.

Three days ago, USTR released its annual "Special 301" Report on the adequacy and effectiveness of US trading partners' protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights (IPR) and market access for persons that rely on IPR protection.

Bulgaria has been placed on the Watch List due to severe deterioration of enforcement in the areas of government use of pirated software and piracy over the Internet, as well as denial of fair and equitable market access through the authorization and operation of copyright collecting societies.

Bulgaria was removed from the list in 2007 on grounds the country has improved protection of intellectual property and has passed adequate legislation in response of intensified partnership with the US.

The "Special 301" Report is an annual review of the global state of IPR protection, enforcement, and market access, which USTR conducts pursuant to Section 182 of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended by the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988 and the Uruguay Round Agreements Act. 

USTR reviewed 95 trading partners for the 2013 Special 301 Report, and placed 41 countries on the Priority Foreign Country, Priority Watch List, or Watch List. 

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Tags: USTR, United States Trade Representative, "Special 301" Report, piracy, Internet, rights, regime, intellectual property, watch list, US, Bulgaria


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