NEW DELHI: Despite vehement and exhaustive submissions arraying the strength of the Indian IP regime, India continues to be on the watch list in the United States Trade Representative (USTR) 2014 Special 301 Report.
Others in the list are China, Russia, Algeria, Argentina, Chile, Indonesia, Pakistan, Thailand and Venezuela.
The report, however, commends India for its achievements like digitisation and upgradation of IP offices and active copyright enforcement by the Delhi High Court through injunctive relief, to name a few. In the report, the US has also recognised the role of bilateral engagements between US and India to resolve concerns relating to Intellectual Property.
"FICCI in its response to Hearing Testimony of India before USTR had strongly asserted that India has a well-established legislative, administrative and judicial framework to safeguard IPRs which meets its obligations under TRIPS, and has withheld the test of severe international scrutiny. We are glad to note that India has not been given the Priority Country status as this could have had serious ramification on economic, political and trade sanctions", according to FICCI secretary general Dr A Didar Singh.
“Indian IP law is TRIPS Compliant and more. Indian copyright law is one of the strongest and best in the world. India protected computer programmes by copyright much earlier than the US. The Indian Copyright Act 2012 law is in full conformity with international treaties of WIPO. The legislative and statutory measures are supplemented by appropriate administrative measures by the Governments both at the Centre and in the States for enforcement of IPRs; this includes Inter-Ministerial Committee on Enforcement of IPR laws, Copyright Enforcement Advisory Council (CEAC), Enforcement Cells, Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) and Automated Recording and Targeting System (ARTS) portal of Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC).”
The national IP strategy gives utmost importance to IPR Portfolios. Recent upgradation of the Intellectual Property Offices in accordance with the international standards has been one of the significant steps taken by the Indian government to make it more service oriented and user friendly.
With effect from 15 October 2013, Intellectual Property Office (IPO) has also started functioning as International Search Authority (ISA) and International Preliminary Examining Authority under PCT.