Ecuador has been moved from the Priority Watch List to the Watch
List in the 2016 Special 301 Report of the Office of the
United States Trade Representative (USTR). The basis for this
upgrade is the reinstatement in Ecuador of criminal procedures
and penalties for commercial scale counterfeiting and piracy,
which was the basis for downgrading it to the Priority Watch
List in 2015.
Nevertheless, concerns remain regarding Ecuador´s
enforcement of IPR against widespread counterfeiting and
piracy, as well as the draft Code of the Social Economy of
Knowledge, Creativity, and Innovation (known as draft
billINGENIOS) which, according to the USTR,
in its current form "would represent a departure from
international practice and could threaten foreign investment
in and further development of Ecuador's innovative and
creative industries." Moreover, Ecuador is also
encouraged by the USTR to bring its patentmaintenance fees back into alignment
with international practice and to provide clarification on
its processes related to the compulsory licensing
The Special 301 Report is an annual review of the global state
of IPR protection and enforcement aimed at identifying trade
barriers to U.S. companies and products due to the
intellectual property laws in other countries.
The annual report identifies a list of "Priority Foreign
Countries" which are judged to have inadequate
intellectual property laws, as well as a "Priority Watch
List" and a "Watch List", containing countries whose
intellectual property systems are deemed of concern to
The 2016 Special 301 Report also deems other fourteen Latin
American countries of concern regarding IPR. Argentina, Chile
and Venezuela remain in the Priority Watch List and, according
to the USTR will be the subject of particularly
intense bilateral engagement during the coming year. Barbados,
Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republican,
Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico and Peru remain in the Watch List
during 2016 and, according to the report also merit bilateral
attention to address underlying IPR problems.
Please click here if you want to
read the complete 2016 Special 301 Report.
Under the Mexican Trademark Law there is no obligation to use a trademark until renewal time is reached in the 10th year as of the filing date of the registration to be renewed and when filing the application for renewal it is only necessary to declare under oath that the mark has been used during a term of the last three years.
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