June 11, 2009

U.S. Chamber Hails Passage of Legislation Providing Enhanced Protection and Enforcement of IP Laws

Esper commends Berman, Larsen, and Kirk for ‘steadfast support of IP rights’

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Chamber of Commerce today hailed the passage of H.R. 2410, the Foreign Relations Authorization Act, which would further IP enforcement as a key component of U.S. foreign policy. The measure, sponsored by Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Howard Berman, would among other things enhance State Department resources and training for intellectual property enforcement efforts and protect IP rights in current international climate change negotiations.

“This legislation will play a vital role in efforts to protect job-creating intellectual property abroad,” said Mark Esper, executive vice president of the Chamber’s Global Intellectual Property Center (GIPC). “Through increased IP enforcement and an emphasis on protecting IP rights in climate change negotiations, America’s foreign policy efforts will focus on protecting jobs and strengthening our economy.”

“Chairman Berman’s commitment to addressing the serious problem of IP theft is evident, and we commend his leadership on this issue,” said Esper.  “Reps. Larsen and Kirk also played a leading role in this bill. We thank them for their steadfast support of IP rights.”

As a result of Chairman Berman’s leadership, H.R. 2410 includes language supporting ten IP attachés to serve in U.S. embassies and diplomatic missions.  They will coordinate with foreign governments, rights holders, the Secretary of State, and the White House IP enforcement coordinator to protect and enforce IP rights abroad. By a 432-0 margin, the House also adopted an amendment by Reps. Larsen and Kirk that would emphasize compliance with and enforcement of, existing international legal requirements for the protection of IP rights, related to energy or environmental technologies with respect to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

The Chamber’s Global Intellectual Property Center is working around the world to champion IP as vital to creating jobs, saving lives, advancing global economic growth and generating breakthrough solutions to global challenges.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing more than 3 million businesses and organizations of every size, sector, and region.

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