Feeds

WTO backs US in Chinese piracy dispute

66.6 per cent guilty

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

The World Trade Organization has said that China should change its copyright and anti-counterfeit laws to provide better legal protection to foreign products, based on trade complaints filed by the US government.

A WTO panel of judges ruled today that China's intellectual property laws don't meet some of the obligations required by the Geneva-based trade arbiter. The panel's report agreed with two of the three arguments of the US complaint first filed in 2007, but disagreed that China needs to alter its laws that exempt small-scale counterfeiters from prosecution.

The panel found that China breached trade rules by ignoring piracy and the counterfeiting of products like CDs, DVDs, and software that don't meet the country's "content review" standards. The US argued that the requirements let unauthorized works be produced in China and exported without the risk of copyright violation.

China was also knocked for its policy of auctioning off counterfeit goods seized at the border by simply removing the fake brand or infringing trademark.

The US failed to convince the WTO judges, however, that Chinese copyright pirates and counterfeiters don't fear criminal prosecution because the government's threshold for bringing a case is so high it effectively allows sales on a "commercial scale." The US Trade Representatives' office said the conclusion was "disappointing" in a statement (PDF).

"The findings in the panel report will make an important contribution to China's efforts to improve IPR enforcement regime, just as the imminent prospect of a WTO dispute contributed to China's cutting its threshold for criminal prosecution of copyright infringement in half just before the United States filed its complaint," the US office stated.

Both the US and China can appeal the decision. Under the trade org's rules, China must change its laws to conform to the ruling - or the US can petition for WTO retaliation against Chinese wares. ®

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.