New Delhi: The 2023 Special 301 Report on Intellectual Property Protection and Enforcement by the Office of United States Trade Representative released on Wednesday has placed India on its ‘Priority Watch List’ of seven countries that also includes Russia, China and Venezuela.
India remains one of the world’s most challenging major economies with respect to protection and enforcement of IP, the report claims. “The top countries of origin for counterfeit pharmaceuticals seized at the U.S. border in Fiscal Year 2022 were China, India, and Turkey. A recent study by OECD and EUIPO found that China, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, the Philippines, and Vietnam are the leading sources of counterfeit medicines distributed globally,” it states.
The report says that the US has on several occasions and in various fora raised IP concerns regarding the Data Protection Bill, 2021. In November 2022, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) released an improved draft Digital Personal Data Protection Bill that took steps to address concerns from the previous draft regarding intellectual property protection. However, right holders remain concerned with the concise language of the Bill, noting that problematic issues may be reintroduced at the rule-making stage after the Bill is enacted. The US is closely following the progress of this Bill, it states.