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Asian countries recommended for US watchlist over piracy concerns

Four Asian markets have been recommended for placement on the United States Trade Representative’s priority watchlist due to allegations of widespread copyright infringement.

Creative industries in China, Taiwan, India and Vietnam were negatively cited in the International Intellectual Property Alliance’s submission to the USTR’s annual ‘Special 301’ report. The document highlights major copyright breaches across the music, film, television, video game and print industries.

The IIPA also recommended that Indonesia and Thailand be added to the USTR’s watchlist, although at a lower priority level than the other markets mentioned above. The creative industries were said to have generated more than US$1.2 trillion of US economic output in 2015, accounting for more than 5.5 million American jobs.

“The health and competitiveness of the US economy depend on a thriving copyright sector that creates economic growth, jobs and exports,” said Steven J. Metalitz, IIPA Counsel.

“Our trading partners have taken on numerous commitments over the years to provide modern levels of protection for copyright; more effective policies and tools to enforce that protection; and freer, more open markets around the world. Reducing the gaps and shortfalls in fulfilment of these commitments will advance the overall national economic interest of the United States.”

“IIPA applauds USTR for making the Special 301 process a positive catalyst for change to further open key markets around the world to products and services that embody American creativity and innovation,” added Metalitz . “Meeting the challenges identified in this submission will create more good American jobs, promote exports, and contribute substantially to healthy economic growth in the US and abroad.”

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