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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2006
Commerce: Dan Nelson, 202-482-4883
DHS: Jarrod Agen, 202-282-8010
Justice: Brian Roehrkasse, 202-616-2777
State: Tom Casey, 202-647-2492
USTR: Gretchen Hamel, 202-395-3230

Bush Administration Releases Report on
Intellectual Property Enforcement and Protection

WASHINGTON – Today the Bush Administration released the 2006 Report to the President and Congress on Coordination of Intellectual Property Enforcement and Protection.  The report sets forth the actions and initiatives that the U.S. government has taken over the past year to combat the rising tide of global counterfeiting and piracy, and notes the importance of these efforts because of the critical role intellectual property (IP) plays in the country’s economic strength and the health and safety of consumers.

The report was produced by the National Intellectual Property Law Enforcement Coordination Council (NIPLECC). The Council brings together the leaders of the key federal government agencies responsible for intellectual property enforcement to support the Bush Administration’s efforts. The Council is composed of representatives from the Departments of Commerce, Homeland Security, Justice and State, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, and the U.S. Coordinator for International Intellectual Property Enforcement.

“Protecting the ideas and technology of U.S. businesses is a critical task, and it is clearly on the front burner for the Bush Administration.  We are devoting more time and resources to keep the pressure on the bad guys,” said Commerce Secretary Carlos M. Gutierrez.  “There is much we’ve achieved in the past year, but we cannot be satisfied.  Complacency has no place in today’s global economy.  So I look forward to working with businesses to keep America competitive in the years ahead.”

“This report verifies our significant and substantial efforts to stem the tide of intellectual property theft,” said Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.  “The Department of Justice is committed to working very closely with its partners as this Administration wages an unprecedented effort to crack down on the growing global trade in counterfeit and pirated goods.”
                 
“Whether it is referred to as counterfeiting, or piracy, or willful infringement of trademarks and copyrights, it all comes under the less elegant heading of stealing – pure and simple – and we must continue our efforts to stop it,” said U.S. Trade Representative Susan Schwab. “For the global trading system to work, producers and consumers in the United States and around the world must be confident the rules of the game are fair and evenly applied. This report underscores that the resources of the U.S. government are fully engaged in thwarting pirates, counterfeiters and thieves.”

 “Strong intellectual property protection and enforcement are essential for America's global competitiveness and the further growth of emerging knowledge economies in the developing world,” said Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs Dan Sullivan.  “This report highlights the robust commitment of agencies across government to combating piracy and counterfeiting and to safeguarding American ideas, brands and inventions. The State Department is making a critical contribution to this work through its Office of International Intellectual Property Enforcement and its network of Embassies and consulates, which are advocating for U.S. right holders around the world.”

Highlights of the 2006 report include:

Working with U.S. Industry and Engaging our Trading Partners

Increasing Efforts to Seize Counterfeit Goods at Our Borders

Pursuing Criminal Enterprises

Congressional Direction and Presidential Leadership

Demonstrating the Impact of Coordination

Priorities for the Coming Year

Attachment: Report to the President and Congress on Coordination of Intellectual Property Enforcement and Protection, September 2006

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