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Acting U.S. Trade Representative Sapiro Announces Section 301 Investigation of Ukraine

05/30/2013

Washington, D.C. – Acting U.S. Trade Representative Miriam Sapiro announced today that the United States has initiated an investigation under section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 of the acts, policies, and practices of the Government of Ukraine that resulted in the identification of Ukraine as a Priority Foreign Country (PFC) in this month’s Special 301 Report.

The Special 301 Report identified critical problems in Ukraine’s intellectual property rights (IPR) regime with respect to government use of pirated software, piracy over the Internet, and non-transparent and unfair administration and operation of copyright collecting societies.

“The United States has identified serious concerns with Ukraine’s treatment of intellectual property rights, as described in our Special 301 Report,” said Ambassador Sapiro. “We will consult with the Government of Ukraine on the practices that led us to initiate this investigation.”

As part of this investigation, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) will receive comments from interested stakeholders and will hold a public hearing on July 18. USTR will publish a notice in the Federal Register announcing the initiation of the investigation and procedures for interested persons to submit written comments and to request to participate in the hearing.

BACKGROUND

USTR designated Ukraine as a PFC in this year’s Special 301 Report. A country identified as a PFC is a trading partner whose onerous or egregious acts, policies, or practices have the greatest adverse impact (actual or potential) on relevant U.S. products, while at the same time that country is not entering into negotiations or making significant progress in negotiations to address those problems. More information regarding the Special 301 report can be found here

Persons wishing to testify at the July 18 hearing must submit a notification of intent to testify, along with a written summary of their testimony, by June 27. Other interested parties have until July 31 to submit written comments regarding the investigation. Unless extended under section 304 of the Trade Act of 1974, determinations in the investigation will be made by November 30, 2013.