Section 182 of the Trade Act requires USTR to identify countries that deny adequate and effective protection of IPR or deny fair and equitable market access to U.S. persons who rely on intellectual property protection. The provisions of Section 182 are commonly referred to as the ``Special 301'' provisions of the Trade Act.
Those countries that have the most onerous or egregious acts, policies, or practices and whose acts, policies, or practices have the greatest adverse impact (actual or potential) on relevant U.S. products are to be identified as Priority Foreign Countries. In addition, USTR has created a ``Priority Watch List'' and a ``Watch List'' under Special 301 provisions. Placement of a trading partner on the Priority Watch List or Watch List indicates that particular problems exist in that country with respect to IPR protection, enforcement, or market access for persons relying on intellectual property.
In the 2014 Special 301 Report, USTR placed India on the Priority Watch List and noted that it would conduct an OCR of India focusing in particular on assessing progress made in establishing and building effective, meaningful, and constructive engagement with the Government of India on IPR issues of concern. An OCR is a tool that USTR uses to encourage progress on IPR issues of concern and can provide an opportunity for heightened engagement with a trading partner to address and remedy such issues.
2. Written Comments
To facilitate the review, written comments should be as detailed as possible and provide information and views relevant to assessing the quality of the Government of India's engagement on IPR issues of concern, in particular those issues identified in the 2014 Special 301 Report, including ideas on how the U.S. and Indian governments can enhance bilateral engagement, recommendations regarding the focus of such engagement, as well as the quality of engagement interested parties have experienced with the Government of India on IPR issues. Comments should focus on the time period since issuance of the 2014 Special 301 Report in April. To the extent relevant, USTR requests that comments include specific references to laws, regulations, policy statements, or other measures that should factor in the review and describe engagement interested parties have had with the Government of India on IPR issues of concern.
Deadlines: Friday, October 31, 2014--Deadline for the public, except foreign governments, to submit written comments. Friday, November 7, 2014--Deadline for foreign governments to submit written comments.