[Ip-health] USTR Threats to South Africa Unite Meds and A2K advocates

Sean Flynn sflynn at wcl.american.edu
Tue Nov 19 11:13:59 PST 2019

The USTR has announced that its next GSP review hearing will include consideration of the complaint by the IIPA alleging that South Africa's adoption of a US style fair use right would violate the adequate and effective intellectual property requirement for GSP (19 U.S.C. 2462(c)(5)). https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/11/19/2019-24947/generalized-system-of-preferences-gsp-notice-regarding-a-hearing-for-country-practice-reviews-of?utm_campaign=subscription+mailing+list&utm_source=federalregister.gov&utm_medium=email See IIPA PETITION LEADS USTR TO REVIEW SOUTH AFRICA' S GSP BENEFITS http://infojustice.org/archives/41736

The primary complaints about the bill involve its fair use clause modeled on US law, rights to use excerpts in education, override of contractual restrictions on user rights, rights reversion to authors (25 years after assignment), and mandatory non-waivable royalty rights. The notice announces a January 30th hearing and a January 17th deadline for submission of comments, prehearing briefs, and requests to testify.

The last time the USTR threatened to remove GSP benefits from South Africa for an IP issue was when South Africa passed a law allowing the use of parallel importation of AIDS drugs in the late 1990s. Today it is copyright fair use at issue. Access to knowledge and access to medicine advocates are standing together against this latest US bullying. https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2019-11-10-mr-president-stand-up-to-trump-and-big-hollywood/

If you would like to express your support for South Africa's rights and be informed about the contributions of the Global Expert Network on Copyright User Rights to the process, sign your name and organization if applicable here: SA Copyright Sign On https://form.jotform.com/pijip/SupportSACopyAmendBill

Organizations are encouraged to consider making comments on this aspect of the GSP review this year.

Sean Flynn
Professorial Lecturer and Director
Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property
American University Washington College of Law

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