Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA)

  

Formal rounds of negotiation

  

11th and final round of the negotiations

The 11th and final round of the negotiations for the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) was concluded successfully in Tokyo, Japan on October 2, 2010 (draft agenda, pdf 36 KB and press release, pdf 94 KB). Participants in the negotiations constructively resolved nearly all substantive issues and produced a consolidated and largely finalized text of the proposed agreement, which will be submitted ad referendum to their respective authorities.  The participants agreed to work expeditiously to resolve the small number of outstanding issues that require further examination in capitals, with a view to finalizing the text of the agreement as promptly as possible.

  

Tenth formal round of negotiations

The 10th round of negotiations for the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) took place from 16 to 20 August 2010 in Washington D.C., USA (Report, pdf 142 KB). Participants discussed all the themes of the Agreement, namely: initial provisions, civil and criminal enforcement measures for infringement of intellectual property rights, border measures, enforcement in the digital environment, enforcement practices, international cooperation, institutional arrangements as well as final provisions (agenda (pdf 58 KB), and press release (pdf 34 KB)). The next round of negotiations will take place this autumn in Japan.

  

Ninth formal round of negotiations

The ninth round of negotiations for the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) took place from 28 June to 1st July 2010 in Lucerne. The discussions were intensive and concentrated on civil and criminal enforcement measures for infringement of intellectual property rights, border measures, enforcement in the digital environment as well as the scope of the Agreement (draft agenda, pdf 65 KB and press release, pdf 72 KB). The next round of negotiations will take place this summer in the USA.

  

Eighth formal round of negotiations and imminent publication of the draft text of the agreement

From 12 to 16 April, the eighth round of negotiations on the proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) took place in Wellington, New Zealand. Border measures, civil and criminal enforcement measures for infringement of intellectual property rights as well as law enforcement in the digital environment were the issues primarily dealt with. The discussions were intensive and carried out in a constructive atmosphere so that good progress could be made. In addition, the participants agreed to publish the draft text of the agreement by 21 April 2010 (press release, pdf 43 KB). The next round of negotiations will take place in June 2010 in Switzerland.

  

Seventh formal round of negotiations

The negotiations on the proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) were held in Guadalajara, Mexico from 26 to 29 January 2010. The talks took place in a constructive atmosphere and concentrated on civil law measures against infringement of intellectual property rights, border measures as well as the enforcement of intellectual property rights in the digital environment (agenda, pdf 12 KB and press release, pdf 83 KB). The next round of negotiations will take place in April 2010 in New Zealand.

  

Sixth formal round of negotiations

The 6th round of negotiations for the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) took place from 4 to 6 November 2009 in Seoul (Republic of Korea). The discussions were constructive and productive. The following themes were discussed: enforcement of intellectual property rights in the digital environment and criminal law context as well as matters concerning transparency, in particular the providing of information to the public (agenda, pdf 33 KB and press statement, pdf 59 KB). The next round of negotiations will take place in January 2010 in Mexico.

  

Fifth formal round of negotiations

The 5th round of negotiations for the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) was held in Rabat on July 16th and 17th, 2009, hosted by the Kingdom of Morocco. The meeting was opened by his Excellency Ahmed Reda CHAMI, Minister of Industry, Trade and New Technologies of Morocco. During this meeting, the discussions focused on International Cooperation, Enforcement Practices and Institutional Issues. Participants also continued discussions on transparency matters, including providing information to stakeholders and the interested public (agenda, pdf 82 KB and press statement, pdf 72 KB). The next round of negotiations shall take place next November in the Republic of Korea. Participants confirmed their intention to advance negotiations expeditiously in order to conclude the ACTA Agreement by 2010. After the November Round in the Republic of Korea, the Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property will invite interested stakeholders to an information and consultation event on the ACTA Agreement in Berne.

  

Fourth formal round of negotiations

Discussions on the proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) continued in Paris from December 15 to 18, hosted by the European Union. As in previous meetings, the participants in the discussion included Australia, Canada, the European Union, represented by the European Commission and the EU Presidency (France), Japan, Korea, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, Singapore, Switzerland, and the United States (alphabetically ordered). EU Member States also attended the meeting.
The discussion focused on international cooperation, enforcement practices and institutional issues. Participants also continued previous discussions on criminal enforcement of IPR. They also shared information on approaches to fighting IPR infringements on the Internet. Participants made steady progress in these discussions. Participants shared the results of consultations that had been held with their respective stakeholders and noted the interests expressed by stakeholders in receiving more information. Participants agreed on the importance of transparency and on holding further discussions on sharing additional information with the public.

  

Third formal round of negotiations

The participants of the proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement continued their discussions in Tokyo October 8-9, 2008. The meeting was the latest in a series of meetings to discuss proposals concerning different aspects of the agreement in order to come up with a comprehensive draft of the whole agreement. Participants included delegations from Australia, Canada, the European Union (European Commission and the current French EU Presidency), Japan, Korea, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, Singapore, the United States and Switzerland.
The discussion focused on criminal enforcement of intellectual property rights, including forfeiture and destruction of counterfeit trademark goods and the question of penalties. Participants also continued their previous discussions of civil enforcement of intellectual property rights, especially how to properly determine the amount of damages and in this context how to reconcile the different national approaches. Participants also discussed the scope of the agreement, namely whether to limit it to infringements of copyright and trademarks or whether to include other intellectual property rights.

  

Second formal round of negotiations

Negotiation of an Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement continued in Washington, D.C. July 29-31, 2008. Participants in the negotiation included Australia, Canada, the European Union and its Member States plus the presidency (France), Japan, Korea, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, Singapore, the United States and Switzerland. The discussion at this meeting focused on civil remedies for infringements of intellectual property rights, including such issues as availability of preliminary measures, preservation of evidence, damages, and legal fees and costs. Participants also continued their previous discussions of border enforcement.

  

First formal round of negotiations

Participants in the discussions regarding an Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) met for the first formal round of negotiations on June 3 and 4, 2008. It was the first in a series of such meetings scheduled for the coming months to negotiate the various aspects of such an agreement. The first round was primarily focused on border measures.
Delegations from the following countries took part in the first round of negotiations: Australia, Canada, the European Union and member states plus the presidency (Slovenia), Japan, Jordan, Korea, Morocco, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, the United States and Switzerland.

  

Mandate for Switzerland in the ACTA Negotiations

Switzerland was invited by Japan and the USA to participate in an initiative for a plurilateral agreement to enhance the international control of counterfeiting and piracy with willing countries. Switzerland shares concern over the international rise in counterfeiting and piracy. Furthermore, the aims of ACTA fundamentally correspond with Switzerland’s engagement up until now at international level, while the measures being advanced by ACTA correspond to what Swiss legislation has already envisioned. On this basis, the Federal Council approved Switzerland’s participation in the negotiations (resolution of 30 May 2008, published in the official gazette in German or French).
The Federal Council ordered that a delegation, comprised of representatives from the IPI, SECO and the Directorate General of Customs, should represent Switzerland in the negotiations.
The Federal Council mandate goes on to specify that the Swiss delegation is to make efforts to ensure that Switzerland becomes neither obligated to introduce new standards of protection nor to revise currently valid legislation by joining such an agreement.

  
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