INDIA AMONGST SPECIAL 301 PRIORITY WATCH-LIST
Date : 04 Dec 2000
Location : New Delhi
Under the Section 301 provisions of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended the USTR identifies countries that deny adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights or deny fair and equitable market access to US persons that rely upon intellectual property protection. Although the US trade law recognises only the category of "priority foreign country", the USTR has been following the practice of placing countries on three different categories called the ‘Priority Foreign Country’, ‘Priority Watch List’, and ‘Watch List’, depending on the perception of inadequacy of protection given to US intellectual property rights. The US has placed India on the priority watch list under this year’s review of Special 301 provisions of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended. India is among the 16 trading partners of US, placed on the priority watch list. The others are Argentina, the Dominican Republic, Egypt, the European Union, Greece, Guatemala, Israel, Italy, Korea, Malaysia, Peru, Poland, Russia, Turkey and Ukraine. No legal consequences follow from placing of any country either in the Watch List or the priority watch list. The government has, however, made it clear that there is no reason to identify India in any category under the Special 301 provisions. This was indicated by Shri Omar Abdullah, Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.