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Ambassador Kirk Commemorates World IP Day

Ambassador Kirk commemorated World Intellectual Property Day at an event on Capitol Hill with Chairman John Conyers (D-MI) of the House Judiciary Committee. At the event, Ambassador Kirk spoke about the importance of intellectual property rights in trade policy. World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Deputy Director General James Pooley; David Kappos, Undersecretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO; Francisco Sanchez, Undersecretary of Commerce for International Trade; and American Intellectual Property Law Association Executive Director Q. Todd Dickinson also attended the event. 

According to industry estimates, IP-intensive industries employ about 18 million Americans. World Intellectual Property Day is celebrated by WIPO and its 184 Member States to increase understanding of the importance of intellectual property in promoting creativity and innovation to encourage respect for intellectual property rights, which protect the works of inventors, authors, and artists. 

Intellectual property plays a significant role in promoting creativity and innovation and to encourage respect for these rights. As President Obama recently said, “Our single greatest asset is the innovation and the ingenuity and creativity of the American People. It is essential to our prosperity and it will only become more so in this century.” 

USTR is committed to working with America’s trading partners to secure adequate and effective intellectual property safeguards wherever American goods and services are sold. This is being done in many different ways, including by: working cooperatively with foreign governments to identify and remedy situations of inadequate protection of US intellectual property; communicating through the Special 301 Report about countries where intellectual property rights are not receiving appropriate protection; negotiating agreements that commit other countries to protect U.S. IPR, and working hard to conclude the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) that will support America’s competitive advantage in cutting edge industries by promoting strong enforcement of IPR. Lastly, when necessary USTR does not hesitate to initiate formal disputes such as through the World Trade Organization dispute settlement mechanism, when countries fail to live up to their intellectual property commitments.