Shrinking the Atlantic and Improving Intellectual Property Protection

July 21, 2011

Cecilia Almeida is an intern at the International Trade Administration in the Office of Intellectual Property Rights. She is studying law at Loyola University in New Orleans. 

Last week, the Atlantic Ocean shrunk considerably for me as the U.S.-EU IPR Working Group met in Washington D.C. and I attended as an intern of the International Trade Administration (ITA).  The Working Group is co-chaired by ITA and the U.S. Trade Representative for the United States and by the Directorate General for Trade for the European Union.  The Working Group met with stakeholders at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to discuss U.S and European joint efforts to improve intellectual property rights enforcement and protection in key third country markets.

Representatives from a range of different industries as well as representatives from a number of consumer groups were present and able to participate in the discussions.  I was able to learn about intellectual property rights and the efforts undertaken by the U.S. and the EU, and to stop intellectual property infringement.  It was an invaluable experience.

The Atlantic continued to shrink even more so as this meeting was followed by a government to government meeting on Friday. At this meeting, both the United States and the European Union reaffirmed their commitment to continued cooperation and discussed ways in which the U.S. and EU might further expand their joint activities.  I was happy to be a part of  these discussions to hear first hand information on the topic as it helped me expand my knowledge of a wide range of intellectual property rights issues.

In 2005, the United States and European Union came together and established the Intellectual Property Rights Working Group, which is composed of intellectual property rights officials representing lead agencies from both the United States and Europe. The Group was established to identify the areas for joint action particularly in third-country markets where the U.S. and EU share many of the same intellectual property concerns.

To learn more about intellectual property rights protection and enforcement and the resources the U.S. Government has developed to aid U.S. rights holders, go to www.stopfakes.gov.

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