Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Friday, Feb. 7th Deadline to Submit Comments on Foreign Countries that Fail to Protect Intellectual Property Rights

The United States Trade Representative is requesting written submissions from the public concerning foreign countries that deny adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights or deny fair and equitable market access to U.S. persons who rely on intellectual property protection. USTR requests that interested parties provide the information described below in the ``Public Comments'' section, and identify whether a particular trading partner should be named as a Priority Foreign Country under Section 182 of the Trade Act or placed on the Priority Watch List or Watch List. Foreign governments that have been identified in previous Special 301 Reports or that are nominated for review in 2014 are considered interested parties, and are invited to respond to this request for public submissions. Interested parties, including foreign governments, wishing to submit information to be considered during the review or testify at the public hearing must adhere to the procedures and deadlines set forth below.

Dates/Deadlines: The schedule and deadlines for the 2014 Special 301 review are as follows:

Friday, February 7, 2014--Deadline for interested parties, except foreign governments, to submit written comments, notice of intent to testify at the Special 301 Public Hearing, and hearing statements.

Friday, February 14, 2014--Deadline for foreign governments to submit written comments, notice of intent to testify at the Special 301 Public Hearing, and, although not mandatory, any prepared hearing statements.

February 24, 2014--Public Hearing--The Special 301 Subcommittee will hold a Public Hearing for interested parties, including representatives of foreign governments, at the offices of USTR, 1724 F Street NW., Washington, DC 20508. No later than Wednesday, February 19, 2014, USTR will confirm the date and location of the hearing and provide the schedule at http://www.ustr.gov.

March 7, 2014--Deadline for submitting post-hearing written comments. Interested parties may provide written comments after the hearing. To ensure consideration, comments must be received no later than Friday, March 7, 2014. Please submit additional written comments electronically via http://www.regulations.gov, docket number USTR-2013-0040.

On or about April 30, 2014--USTR will publish the 2014 Special 301 Report within 30 days of the publication of the National Trade Estimate (NTE) Report.

Procedures/Addresses: All written comments, notices of intent to testify at the public hearing, hearing statements and post-hearing written responses must be in English and submitted electronically via http://www.regulations.gov, docket number USTR-2013-0040. Please specify ``2014 Special 301 Review'' in the ``Type Comment'' field on http://www.regulations.gov.

Requirements for Written Comments

To facilitate the review, written comments should be as detailed as possible and provide all necessary information for identifying and assessing the effect of the acts, policies, and practices. USTR requests that interested parties provide specific references to laws, regulations, policy statements, executive, presidential or other orders, administrative, court or other determinations that should factor in the review. USTR also requests that, where relevant, submissions mention particular regions, provinces, states, or other subdivisions of a country in which an act, policy, or practice is believed to warrant special attention. Finally, submissions proposing countries for review should include data, loss estimates, and other information regarding the economic impact on the United States, U.S. industry and the U.S. workforce caused by the denial of adequate and effective intellectual property protection. Comments that include quantitative loss claims should be accompanied by the methodology used in calculating such estimated losses.

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