The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative is seeking public comment for a Feb. 20 hearing on Special 301 intellectual property protection provisions, according to a notice scheduled for publication in the Federal Register Dec. 31.
Section 182 of the Trade Act of 1974 (19 U.S.C. 2242)--informally known as Special 301--requires USTR to identify countries that deny adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights (IPR) or deny fair and equitable market access to U.S. persons who rely on intellectual property protection.
As part of the review process, USTR will again conduct a public hearing in 2013. USTR seeks written submissions from the public concerning foreign countries' acts, policies, or practices that are relevant to deciding whether a particular trading partner should be identified as a priority foreign country under Section 182 or placed on the Priority Watch List or Watch List.
Interested parties, including foreign governments, who want to testify at the hearing must follow the procedures set out in the Federal Register for filing a notice of intent to testify. According to the notice, Feb. 8 is the deadline for interested parties, except for foreign governments, to submit comments and/or requests to testify and hearing statements. Foreign governments must submit written comments, requests to testify, and hearing statements by Feb. 15.
The Feb. 20 hearing will be held at the offices of USTR, 1724 F St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20508. All written comments, requests to testify, and hearing statements should be sent electronically via http://www.regulations.gov, docket number USTR-2012-0022. Submissions should contain the term “2013 Special 301 Review'' in the “Type comment'' field on http://www.regulations.gov.
The notice can be accessed at: /uploadedFiles/Content/News/Legal_and_Business/Bloomberg_Law/Legal_Reports/spec301(1).pdf.
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